HELPING VETERANS RECEIVE THE ORAL HEALTHCARE THEY DESERVE!
The New York State Dental Foundation (NYSDF) invited NYU Dentistry to join its Veterans Access to Care Initiative and supplement nationwide efforts on Veterans Smile Day (the Friday closest to Veterans Day) by providing a day of free dental care to veterans in need. Recognizing, however, that such an initiative would not close the critical gap in access to sustainable oral health services for this vulnerable population, a small group of committed individuals from NYSDF and NYU Dentistry collaborated with colleagues inside the VA New York Harbor Healthcare System to design a program that would extend beyond the one-day service approach. This collaboration led to NYU Dentistry launching the Veterans Oral Health Initiative (VOHI) in March 2019, a program that includes comprehensive care at no out-of-pocket cost to the veteran, with the ultimate goal of connecting the veteran with a dental home in his/her community for access to ongoing, affordable care. Treatment for veterans living in and around New York City is provided at the College on Saturdays by a group of dedicated dental student and faculty volunteers. The NYSDF has provided a grant of $15,000 per year for two years to help fund the program.
Reprinted with permission from NYU College of Dentistry
To find out more about this great program, please visit: https://dental.nyu.edu/globalreach/veterans-oral-health-initiative.html
Call For Nominations – NYS Dental Foundation Board of Trustees
The Nominating Committee of the New York State Dental Foundation (NYSDF) will meet in September to select candidates to serve on the NYSDF Board of Trustees. The Nominating Committee will submit its recommended slate of Trustee candidates and Board officers for consideration at the Foundation’s annual meeting on 8 November 2019.
Terms of office for Foundation trustees are three years.
Additionally, the New York State Dental Association shall nominate two NYSDA members to serve one year (January – December 2020) terms of office as members of the NYSDF Board of Trustees. Such nominations will be forwarded to the NYSDF Board for review and ratification at the annual meeting.
Current NYSDF Trustees are invited to submit nominations from amongst themselves for the officer positions of Chair, Vice Chair, and Treasurer.
NYSDF Board members should have:
NYSDF Board members are responsible for:
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION!
Veterans Oral Health Initiative (VOHI)
Dental care is not a guaranteed benefit for veterans of the United States military. Only veterans with a service-connected dental disability (i.e. combat injury to the head/neck) or those who are considered 100% disabled as a result of service are eligible for full dental care with the Veterans’ Administration (VA). This leaves nearly 85% of the veterans ineligible for dental care through the VA, and their access to oral health services are subject to their ability to pay out-of-pocket or purchase private or employer-sponsored dental insurance.
Many groups with an interest in veterans’ health have attempted to address the lack of access to dental care by conducting short-term projects; these are usually one-day, annual events offering free consultation, cleanings, or addressing urgent needs only. In order to achieve sustained improvements in veterans’ oral health outcomes or access to care, a different approach must be taken.
Beginning March 2, 2019
NYU Dentistry has partnered with the New York State Dental Foundation to fund the initial costs of delivering care to this vulnerable population. In addition, a handful of concerned alumni have donated additional funding to help cover the treatment plans created for the initial cohort of patients; however, in order to reach a larger number and continue the program in perpetuity, development efforts will continue to focus on covering the high laboratory and specialty costs.
The best bet for sustaining improved access to care is to place each veteran into a permanent dental home in his/her community. In order to do so, dentists in and around New York City are asked to participate by welcoming a veteran into his/her dental practice and offering routine maintenance and ongoing dental care regardless of the patient’s ability to pay.
For more information on this event or become a sponsor, please click here.
The Cleft-Craniofacial Center at Albany Medical Center has a new dental chair to assist its mission to serve children born with facial deformities from across a 25-county region. This exciting addition came about as part of the New York State Dental Foundation’s Equipment Donation Program, through which the Foundation leverages its partnerships with corporate entities such as Henry Schein, Inc., Air Techniques, Midmark and Belmont, and, occasionally, private donors, to provide equipment to help community programs increase their capacity to provide dental treatment to vulnerable populations.
“Everybody involved is incredibly indebted to the dedication of the members of our Charitable Awards Committee, which is chaired by Dr. P. Deborah Weisfuse,” states NYSDF Executive Director Laura Stedman. “Dr. Weisfuse personally oversaw the donation, which was from a private dental office in Manhattan, and Committee member Michele Penrose was instrumental in identifying a moving company that could handle the delivery from New York City to Albany.”
Also contributing to the donation process were Committee members Drs. Joseph Brofsky and Carl Tegtmeier.
The Cleft-Cranio Center is run by pediatric plastic surgeon Dr. Oluwaseun Adetayo. She is assistant professor of surgery at Albany Medical College and also the Section Chief of Pediatric Plastic Surgery. She is the region’s only physician fellowship trained in craniofacial and pediatric plastic surgery (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s School of Medicine). “My goal is to diminish any functional and aesthetic differences, great or small, during those formative years and into adulthood,” explains Dr. Adetayo.
Foundation Chair Dr. G. Kirk Gleason adds “Too often, seeking treatment for things like cleft lips, cleft palates, craniosynostoses and other dento/craniofacial anomalies, involves families having to schedule multiple appointments in several different locations. The AMC Cleft-Craniofacial Center allows patients to see specialists in plastic surgery, orthodontics, dentistry, speech language pathology, genetics and other disciplines in one setting, on one day. Our ability to facilitate a new chair will really help the Center to treat more patients.”
The Foundation extends sincere appreciation and gratitude to the staff of the Albany Medical College Foundation, notably Donna Beebe, Vice President, Development and James R. Kellerhouse, Assistant Vice President, Development, for their assistance in the sometimes complex process of getting the chair from Manhattan to upstate New York. “Most of all,” concludes Dr. Gleason, “we wish to thank Dr. John Stanescu of Midtown Dental Center; without his incredible generosity in gifting the chair, this story would have ended much differently.”
For the second year in a row, the New York State Dental Foundation has partnered with Eugenio Maria de Hostos Community College in the South Bronx. Like the Foundation, Hostos is an educational agent for change, especially for underserved and at risk populations.
In celebration of this year’s Annual Scholarship Benefit, which raises funds to support students along their road to degree completion, the Foundation donated $1,500 to the Two Generation Program, whose purpose is to keep student-parents engaged with the College over the summer, thereby increasing retention and accelerating progress toward life success.
The Foundation is particularly invested in Hostos’ dental hygiene program, from which successful graduates earn an Associates in Applied Science degree. According to Foundation Executive Director Laura Stedman, “Hostos has the most diverse dental hygiene program in New York State, graduating the highest numbers of Latino and African American students. The Dental Hygiene Unit offers free, comprehensive dental hygiene services for all members of the community in an ultramodern patient care facility.”
Foundation Chair Dr. G. Kirk Gleason adds “The fact that 100 percent of the graduates in this program are employed as dental hygienists within six months of graduation is impressive, and surely a mark of the training that they receive pre graduation working in the Hostos Community Clinic.”
Hostos’ own Dr. Amarilis Jacobo (who also is a NYSDA delegate and member of the EDPAC Board of Directors) is this year’s co-chair of the College’s biggest fundraiser, the 2019 Scholarship Benefit. Dr. Jacobo states “My parents always told my siblings and me that the greatest gift one can give or receive is an education. Your greatest treasure is your education as no one can take it away from you. It is with great joy and honor that I serve as the co-chair for the 2019 Annual Scholarship Benefit "
For more information about Hostos’ Two Generation Program, including guidelines on donations, please click here.
Foundation staff will be touring the Dental Hygiene Patient Care Facility later this spring; stay tuned for photos of this exciting and significant program.
Seven Valleys Health Coalition this week received a 2019 GKAS Award from the New York State Dental Foundation. Included in this award is $4,800 to support the Mighty Molar Program expand its reach to include expectant parents and newborns.
Mighty Molar is more than an educational program for elementary school children and community members; Mighty Molar is a 6 foot tall smiling cartoon character who helps make learning about good oral hygiene a fun and memorable experience. Sometimes accompanying Mighty Molar is Murray the Toothbrush. Together, they attend community events and are featured in skits and other educational programs we bring to local elementary schools, day cares, and Head Start programs. Kids learn about healthy foods, how to brush their teeth, and tooth safety. SVHC staff, community members, senior volunteers, and SUNY Cortland students are all involved in sharing the message that teeth are meant to last a lifetime.
Anne A. Withers, Child Care Resource & Referral Program Director for the United Way Child Development Council, says “Expanding the outreach of the Mighty Molar Program is an excellent next step for oral health outreach in Cortland County.”
The GKAS Award will be used to create dental health record and education booklets to be given to new and expecting parents. The goal of the booklets is to help parents keep track of their child’s dental health record, receive helpful dental health quick facts, have a list of local dentists and a timeline of when a child should receive treatments such as fluoride varnish or dental sealants.