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Proposals by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to close 44 public dental clinics in the city would affect the dental care of needy children, according to a dental group.
The New York State Dental Association spoke out against the potential clinic closures, suggesting that they would exacerbate the "economical and logistical barriers" that already prevent many people from visiting a dentist.
In recent months, dental health groups across the U.S. have been raising concerns about the rising cost of dental care, as well as the difficulties often encountered by those who lack dental insurance or are covered by Medicaid.
Now, the NYSDA reminds lawmakers that tooth decay is the most prevalent disease among children in the state, but that it can be prevented with adequate dental care.
"Shutting down New York City's dental program exhibits a lack of understanding of the impact of dental disease on the health of New Yorkers and displays a disregard for the city's most vulnerable populations," commented NYSDA president Dr Stephen Gold.
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