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4000 lined up for free dental care?

Discussion in 'Dental' started by Daurang, Aug 12, 2011.

  1. Daurang

    10+ Year Member

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  3. yappy

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    Why dont they just fork over the few grad for their treatment instead of always look for something for free? I understand there are some of them that really need the help; and I hope they're the ones that got it. But in my experience there is a type of person that would rather not spend money on things they dont consider "fun" or entertaining... dental care would cut into their hobbie money.

    I'm a college student and dont make alot of money, live on my own, but manage to pay for that 150 dollar cavity (rare) or the cleanings bi-yearly. The trade off is when I do have to pay for these things I have to cut down on my expenses alot or at times sell something (like when I had to sell my drumset to fix my car :().
     
  4. youknowthedrill

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    Wow, that's impressive!
     
  5. mike3kgt

    mike3kgt Hopefully scuba diving
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    I would accept you to dental school right now if I could.
     
  6. yappy

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    Man, I wish you could :). I think I might have to reapply next year. I am taking my DAT this next week but i'm just not that optimistic about it. We'll see.


     
  7. lemoncurry

    lemoncurry tequila mockingbird
    Administrator Dentist 10+ Year Member

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    for some people, yes, they would rather spend money on clothing and accessories or other status items than fix their teeth, but I have been witness to the hordes of people out there who have to spend their dental money on food, rent or other necessities. If you're a parent, single or otherwise, and you have kids who need clothes, books, school supplies, food, etc., you're not going to deprive them of that so that you can get a tooth extracted. You find ways to manage the pain and provide for your kids as much as you can. This happens WAY more often than you might think. Finally, when the pain is keeping them up at night or they start to have an abscess, then they come into the urgent care clinic or hopefully find some sort of free clinic that is going on.

    It would be easy if everything were as cut and dried as yappy puts it, but the reality is that life is complicated, money is always in short supply, and people don't prioritize their dental health over much else in their life.
     
  8. Are you serious? I can definintely tell you have never been married and never had kid. I can tell you have never had to choose between feeding and clothing your children and getting your teeth taken care of. There are so many more people out there than you realize. People that do not sit there wanting to live off welfare. People who contribute to society, but make so little money that they barely make enough to pay for rent, utilities and feed and cloth their kids. My wife grew up struggling and knew they had very little money, but it wasn't until she she and I met and I started helping her mom out with her finances that we really graasped the reality of her financial situation. Her mom raised 2 kids on around $600 per month - not because she chose to live off that little amount, but because 2 different individuals decided to not pay attention to their driving and rearended her on two different occassions. She was disabled and could no longer work. There are plenty of people who have grown up in situations similar to my wife's.

    I know there are so many people on this website who are so against any type of government assistance. But, this is not government assistance. This was a project put on by the Georgia Dental Asssociation with 1600 volunteers and 300 dentists volunteering their time to help others in need. Until you have worked at one of these, you will never understand how appreciative most of these patients are. Texas puts on several of these each year usually treatment 500-800 patients per weekend. It is a lot of fun helping people who otherwise couldn't afford to get the treatment done. Yappy, I suggest you volunteer at one of these if you get the chance. It will open your eyes from where they are now.


    +1 :thumbup:
     
  9. lemoncurry

    lemoncurry tequila mockingbird
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    Navy DDS gets it :thumbup:

    Personally, I don't think there are enough of these free dental clinics being offered. I absolutely love treating patients at these types of clinics. LLU participates in quite a few, but I would love to be doing it at least weekly. In the meantime, we have our Urgent Care dept, which is basically the same thing, but we have to charge the patients.
     

  10. If I have a patient that cancels and one of my classmates doesn't need me in oral surgery, you can find me in the urgent care clinic as well.

    Since LLU is founded and funded by the SDA church, it is only natural that they would participate in these clinics. This follows the SDA philosophy on helping others. I know several SDA dentists who also do missions overseas where they provide the word of God and provide free dental care as well. One day, I would love to meet up with some of the SDA friends and go on the missions with them!
     
  11. DrJeff

    DrJeff Senior Member
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    Very true statement. I've been involved with the Mission of Mercy for the 4 years that we've had one in CT, and for the last couple of years have been the head of the numbing station. It is an absolutely amazing event to see 1st hand, and it's one now that even having seen in full operation for 8 clinic days and a total of over 7000 patients treated in those 8 days, it still amazes me to see, and hear the stories and countless amounts of appreciation that the patients express.

    If anyone ever gets the chance to volunteer for a MOM event, please do so. You'll be likely exhausted after working what often can be a 10-12+ hour day (In CT, our Mission typically starts at 6AM and if all goes smoothly the last patient is finished sometime between 4-6PM).

    The thing though about MOM is that while its a great event to both take care of people (and I won't say "in need" since it is open to all and while the vast majority of people being treated are "needy"/"poor" there are some people who aren't, and that's fine too) and also to create awareness for the politicians of the state that that MOM is in about the dental needs of the population that is generally considered to be "underserved", it's NOT the answer. In most states, a MOM is typically a 2, to maybe as many as 6 to 8 day per year (depending on the size of the state and how many MOM's occur in that state per year) event. MOM is also usually about just treating one "problem" that the patient has, it's not about comprehensive care. And this is where it can become a problem in the mind of many a politician who might think that added funding for medicaid based dental programs isn't needed. Often the organizers get asked is they can have a MOM event 3 or 4 times a year all across a state, when from scheduling of the MOM national equipment, and the fundraising/donations that are needed to put on a MOM (in CT our annual MOM needs around $200,000 in cash donations AND a large quantity of materials donations to make it happen) make that essentially impossible. So while MOM is a great event, MOM isn't the end all answer to dental care for the underserved in a state.
     
  12. Just Peachy

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    +1 to everything said by lemoncurry and Navy DDS.

    Yappy, maybe you should get more experience with this particular patient population before passing judgement on them. In my experience as a Georgia resident, there are TONS of people in my state (and nationwide) who desperately need and want dental care, but had to make a choice between paying their rent/buying food for their kids or taking care of their own oral health needs. That's a LOT different than having to sell your drum set to fix your car or having to go out to restaurants less often to make sure you can afford fraternity dues or whatever. Not to sound like a jerk, but get a little perspective here.
     

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