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Dental clinic struggling to address soaring demand
Updated: 1/11/2010 6:59:57 PM
 

Dental clinic struggling to address soaring demand A nonprofit dental clinic in Livingston County, Massachusetts, has announced that it will not accept any new patients until it can reduce the backlog of individuals on its lengthy waiting list.

The VINA Community Dental Center in Brighton, Massachusetts, has handled about 750 patients since opening in September 2008, but has now amassed a list of more than 200 people awaiting dental care, LivingstonDaily.com reports.

The clinic retains about 45 dentists, specialists and hygienists on a volunteer basis, and provides a range of services to those without dental insurance for $15 per visit. However, officers are finding that more aid is needed.

"The clinic can't be volunteer [staff] alone," Christine Love, chairwoman of VINA's fundraising committee, told the news source. "There are too many people that need help."

VINA's director Diane Tenoff reiterated, "The patients need a lot more work than we expected them to."

The last time the clinic accepted new patients was in November, when it took on 80 new people, and officers do not expect another open enrollment period until March.

As opposed to clinics, which often cannot provide continued care to many of their patients, discount dental plans allow many Americans to gain access to consistent coverage while keeping expenses low.

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