Oklahoma Organizations Partner to Provide Dental Care for Oklahoma Veterans
Published: Thursday, November 11, 2021
OKLAHOMA CITY – Collaborating to serve Oklahoma veterans, the University of Oklahoma College of Dentistry, Oklahoma Dental Association, Oklahoma Dental Foundation and Henry Schein Dental hosted the second annual Veteran’s Day dental clinic on Saturday, November 6. This coordinated one-day event improves access to care and provides professional dental services at no cost to participants.
With limited dental benefits provided to veterans, access to oral health care can be difficult, and often, veterans delay urgent needs. Regular dental appointments are essential in evaluating, diagnosing, preventing, or treating oral diseases, which can affect systemic health.
“I am gratified by the response to this clinic and very pleased that we can sustain this opportunity on an annual basis. This free clinic for Oklahoma veterans helps the college fulfill its mission to improve the oral health of Oklahomans, especially in underserved populations,” said Paul M. Mullasseril, D.D.S., M.S., dean of the OU College of Dentistry and immediate past president of the ODA. “Thanks to the tireless efforts of our students, faculty, and staff, and the college’s partnerships with the Oklahoma Dental Association and Henry Schein, we continue to honor our commitment to provide the high-quality care our veterans need and deserve.”
In total, 56 Oklahoma veterans received free dental care; 270 dental procedures were completed which included cleanings, fillings and extractions. More than $19,000 in dental care was donated.
To help facilitate care during the event, Henry Schein donated an array of products including restoratives, personal protective equipment and consumables.
“We at Henry Schein believe that public-private partnerships are key in expanding access to care,” said Lacey Link, Field Sales Consultant, Henry Schein, and an alumna of Oklahoma University College of Dentistry. “Our collaboration with OU College of Dentistry and the ODA is a great example of how we can come together to provide care to and show our appreciation for veterans.”
Participants had previously completed pre-screening appointments to determine their needs for dental care.
Chris Fagan, DDS, ODA President, said, “The Oklahoma Dental Association is proud of its partnership with the OU College of Dentistry. Offering free dental care is one way we can express our appreciation for the sacrifices these veterans have made in order to serve our country, and we look forward to opportunities that lie ahead.”
In addition, the college, ODA, ODF and Henry Schein Dental would like to recognize and thank the Dale K. Graham Veteran’s Foundation and Dentists for the Disabled & Elderly in Need of Treatment (D-DENT) for their support and look forward to serving these heroes and watching this program grow in the years to come.
OU COLLEGE OF DENTISTRY
The OU College of Dentistry is home to the state’s only doctor of dental surgery program and baccalaureate degree program in dental hygiene. More than 60% of the state of Oklahoma’s dentists are graduates of the OU College of Dentistry. The college provides general dental care and specialty care to Oklahomans through student, resident and faculty practice clinics. The OU College of Dentistry has established a reputation of training its students to provide the highest quality of clinical care available.
OU Health is the state’s only comprehensive academic health system of hospitals, clinics and centers of excellence. With 11,000 employees and more than 1,300 physicians and advanced practice providers, OU Health is home to Oklahoma’s largest doctor network with a complete range of specialty care. OU Health serves Oklahoma and the region with the state’s only freestanding children’s hospital, the only National Cancer Institute-Designated OU Health Stephenson Cancer Center and Oklahoma’s flagship hospital, which serves as the state’s only Level 1 trauma center. OU Health’s oncology program at OU Health Stephenson Cancer Center was named Oklahoma’s top facility for cancer care by U.S. News & World Report in its 2020-21 rankings. OU Health also was ranked by U.S. News & World Report as high performing in these specialties: Colon Surgery, COPD and Congestive Heart Failure. OU Health’s mission is to lead healthcare in patient care, education and research. To learn more, visit ouhealth.com.
About the Oklahoma Dental Association:
The Oklahoma Dental Association, founded in 1907, has a membership of more than 1,600 dentists. The Association was established to help foster an awareness of the obligations and responsibilities of the dental profession to society, to help advance the art and science of dentistry, and to promote public health and health services in the State of Oklahoma. For more information about the ODA, visit www.okda.org and to find a dentist near you, visit https://findadentist.ada.org/.