Background: The literature in both medicine and dentistry has increasingly focused on conditions relevant to both professions. However, research addressing these conditions is limited by the scope of available data, the size of their samples, and data sets that can be combined. The aim of this project is to create a Dental VDW using data from the three HMORN members that have both medical and dental data (i.e., Kaiser Permanente Northwest, Marshfield, and HealthPartners Institute). Methods: A team of investigators and VDW programmers was formed. Initial meetings, aimed at coming up with a common design that would accommodate the dental data from all three sites, were held. Each site has a different electronic dental record system and different ways of coding diagnoses and identifying risk. The project has the further challenge that it was being built in anticipation of future projects and so does not have any project related funding. Results: Twelve content areas were identified. Of those, four of the tables have been designed and are having test data loaded into them. In order to simplify these early steps they are designed based on the VDW medical model. The existing ‘Demographics’ table will accommodate both medical and dental patients. ‘Dental Utilization’ will hold data common to all the procedures within an encounter and is very similar to the comparable VDW table. Where dental data starts to diverge from medical is the ‘Dental Diagnosis and Procedures’ table. This is because each dental procedure is related to a specific tooth and surface and can have its own diagnosis code. The ‘Provider’ table is similar to the medical VDW but with different provider specialties. Conclusions: The HMORN is working to create a Dental VDW within an existing Medical VDW that will support efforts to conduct research that crosses the divide that currently exists between medical and dental research. It will be a multi-directional system, allowing medical data within dental studies and dental data within medical studies.