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Wisconsin dentists to donate more than $700,000 in dental care
Updated: 2/5/2010 7:00:24 PM

Wisconsin dentists to donate more than $700,000 in dental care On February 5, approximately 350 Wisconsin dentists will volunteer their time and services as part of the annual Give Kids a Smile program, which provides free dental health services to underprivileged children around the nation.

Since 2003, local Wisconsin dentists have provided more than $3.4 million in charitable dental care to roughly 23,000 children. Participating clinics will offer free screenings and educational programs to kids in need.

"However, charity alone is not a sufficient oral health care delivery system," says Kent Vandehaar, president of the Wisconsin Dental Association.

"Low-income patients suffer for various reasons: failure to care for their own oral health, an inability to find a dental office for routine care and lawmakers' failure to sufficiently fund the dental care they have promised," he added.

Only 71 percent of U.S. residents had their teeth cleaned by a dental professional in 2008. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, 20 percent of all healthcare related funds dedicated to children should be directed at improving and maintaining oral health.

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