WEST ALLIS, WIS., July 21, 2014 – Two-hundred disabled, senior, poor and uninsured adults across the Badger State received $769,903 in much-needed charitable dental care from 549 volunteer dentists between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014 through the Wisconsin Dental Association Foundation’s Donated Dental Services program. In addition, 102 dental laboratories contributed $38,428 in materials and services.
“Everyone was very nice, polite and accommodating…When I was done, I felt like I knew them forever…Thank you for helping me. I can now eat and smile,” wrote one patient from Theresa, Wisconsin.
Many DDS patients generally need extensive dental work that can include bridges, crowns or dentures at a cost of about $3,800 per person.
DDS patients do not qualify for government assistance programs and cannot afford dental care, because a permanent disability, chronic illness or advanced age restricts their income-earning capability. Patients are selected on the basis of financial need and a phone interview with a referral coordinator. A patient candidate then visits a volunteer dentist who assesses dental need and decides whether to accept the financial and clinical responsibilities of providing comprehensive dental care for the individual.
Residents of Calumet, Dodge, Door, Fond du Lac, Grant, Green, Jefferson, Kenosha, Kewaunee, La Fayette, Manitowoc, Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, Rock, Sheboygan, Walworth, Washington, Waukesha and Winnebago counties interested in applying for DDS assistance should contact Program Director Carol Shoemaker at 888-338-6852. Residents of all other Wisconsin counties should call Program Coordinator Carrie Golabowski at 866-812-9840.
Download a DDS application from WDA.org at http://www.wda.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/DDS-Application.pdf.
“I like the DDS system, because it allows us to treat truly needy patients. Wisconsin dentists do want to help…and this system assures that we are finding those with the greatest need and least resources,” Dr. David Clemens, a DDS volunteer general dentist who lives and works in Wisconsin Dells, said.
The state of Wisconsin, Delta Dental of Wisconsin Charitable Fund and WDA Insurance and Services Corp. provide limited monetary support for administrative and lab costs. Participating dentists often donate more than $8 in clinical expertise, treatment and materials for every dollar in funding from the three entities and more than $13 in care for every $1 the state contributes to the program.
The DDS program was established in 1998. Since then, 805 volunteer dentists have provided more than $9.2 million in comprehensive dental care at no charge to 3,211 adults who cannot work due to a permanent disability, chronic illness or advanced age. An additional $651,700 in supplies and services has been donated by 156 dental labs.
Mail tax-deductible donations in support of this statewide, charitable oral health program to WDA Foundation, 6737 W. Washington St., Suite 2360, West Allis WI 53214. Please note “Donated Dental Services” in the check’s memo line. Or, visit the WDA Foundation’s “How you can help” page on WDA.org to donate online.