WEST ALLIS – Charitable dental care valued at more than $1 million was provided to children and adults, ages 1 – 90, during 2,087 patient visits at the ninth Wisconsin Dental Association and WDA Foundation Mission of Mercy held June 22 and 23 at the Exposition Center at Wisconsin State Fair Park in West Allis.
Individuals and families unable to access care in a traditional dental home sought treatment at this large-scale charitable event. The first patient traveled from Madison and waited in line overnight for more than 14 hours before the clinic doors opened at 5:30 a.m. on Friday.
Some 8,332 dental procedures were performed during the two-day clinic, including: 1,090 X-rays, 1,436 fillings, 3,923 teeth pulled, 818 cleanings, 801 sealant/fluoride treatments and 72 root canals and therapeutic pulpotomies. Several dental labs worked with volunteer technicians to create 156 full and partial dentures. Patients also received one-on-one oral hygiene instruction.
“I would like you to know how grateful I am – along with many others – that you are doing this,” wrote Monika B. of Madison, Wis. on her patient comment card.
This year’s volunteers numbered more than 1,400 and came from 188 Wisconsin communities to donate their time, talents, skills and money to help those in need. They included 209 dentists, along with dental hygienists and assistants, Marquette University School of Dentistrystudents and faculty, Milwaukee Area Technical Collegedental hygiene and assisting students and faculty, Spanish, Hmong and American Sign Language interpreters and many general volunteers.
More than 100 organizations and individuals contributed tax-deductible financial and in-kind donations to help cover over $212,000 in costs for equipment and facility rental, supplies, pharmaceuticals and food for this major charitable dental care event which included setup on June 21 and cleanup. WDA dentists and other MOM volunteers donated $6 – $8 in care for every dollar received.
Major financial and in-kind support was provided by the Brady Corporation Foundation, Delta Dental of Wisconsin Foundation, DentaQuest Foundation, Dental Health Products, Inc., Forest County Potawatomi Foundation, Henry Schein Dental, WDA Supply Source and We Energies Foundation.
Delta Dental of Wisconsin Foundation, Dr. Tim and Mrs. Sue Durtsche, First Supply, Henry Schein Dental, Kwik Trip and Professional Insurance Programs – a division of WDA Insurance and Services Corp. have supported all nine WDA MOM programs.
More than 15,000 children and adults have now received in excess of $10.4 million in donated care at WDA Mission of Mercy events since 2009.
“As dental professionals, we are proud to serve our communities, but charitable care is not a long-term, viable solution. The WDA wants to work with state lawmakers to develop and implement policies that make it possible for Badger State residents of all ages to receive cost-effective preventive care and early treatment of oral disease on a regular basis in a dental home near them,” WDA President Dr. Dave Clemens of Wisconsin Dells, said.