Community Service (And Other Opportunities)

Be a Dental Hero!

Multiple sclerosis, kidney failure, heart disease, cancer, and stroke are among too many diseases that can abruptly alter someone’s life. Add physical disability, frequently from accidents or other trauma. By compromising employability while adding medical expenses, they can make many of life’s necessities unaffordable, including dental care. Further compounding the problem, the progression of dental infections without needed treatment can place medical therapies at risk.

This is a dilemma impacting many people throughout Kentucky, and it prompted the Executive Board of the Kentucky Dental Association to endorse development of a statewide Donated Dental Services (DDS) program. You are encouraged – urged - to participate, whether you are a general practitioner or a specialist. Helping even one person would be significant and life-saving. You would be that unfortunate person’s dental hero.

The following comments are from some of our colleagues as they underscore the importance of your involvement. Please take the time to read and understand how you can be a part of something so important.

“As noted in the letter, participation in DDS couldn’t be easier. It doesn’t require that you change anything. You will be sent a brief summary of a person’s circumstances and only after you authorize a referral will arrangements be made with your front office for a diagnostic appointment. And a program coordinator will remain in communication with you and your patient throughout the course of treatment to help assure that all goes well. You can count on appreciative patients being on time for appointments.”

“Donated Dental Services (DDS) is a national humanitarian initiative endorsed by the ADA, the AGD, and essential every specialty organization. More than 15,200 dentists volunteer, assisted by 3,300 participating dental laboratories. The program was developed by Dental Lifeline Network, a charitable affiliate of the American Dental Association.”

“The program focuses on assisting needy disabled, elderly, and medically-compromised individuals who require unaffordable and uncovered, but frequently medically-essential dental care. Most are dependent on Medicare and/or Medicaid to cover their health care costs, but those programs lack essential dental benefits. More than 120,000 individuals have obtained over $250 million in humanitarian dental care.”

“Mutuality of benefits for patients, volunteers and, collectively, our profession, is a guiding principle of DDS. The program was designed by dentists to provide practitioners and their staffs with gratification and satisfaction while being spared annoyances and frustrations. And volunteers are provided a beautiful wood mounted plaque that should you choose to display in your office, can non-verbally inform other patients about your humanitarian values and involvement.”

To volunteer, please call Dental Lifeline Network at 888-471-6334 or the KDA at 800-292-1855.