Public-private partnership unites for underserved Iowans
Johnston, IA – February 22, 2017 – Volunteers in the Donated Dental Services (DDS) program, the flagship program of Dental Lifeline Network (DLN), exceeded $5 million in comprehensive dental treatment contributed by dentists and laboratories to people with disabilities or who are elderly or medically fragile and cannot afford dental care. Dental Lifeline Network • Iowa was founded in 2005 in conjunction with the Iowa Dental Association and receives support from Delta Dental of Iowa and the Iowa Department of Public Health.
Dr. Jay Davidson, Towncrest Dental, Iowa City, active volunteer and the DDS program and chair of Dental Lifeline Network • Iowa, performed the recent procedure that pushed the organization past the $5 million mark.
“I am so proud of the wonderful dedication of all of the DDS volunteers,” said Dr. Jay Davidson. “We are blessed to be able to call dentistry our career and with it the opportunity to give back to our fellow Iowans. Our founder’s message of taking care of our fellow men and women in need will never go away. Our volunteer dentists all thank our volunteer dental lab partners along with the generous contributions of Delta Dental of Iowa.”
More than 250 volunteer dentists, including oral surgeons, and 35 dental laboratories volunteer time and resources and served 1,426 people since the program launched. According to the American Dental Association, three out of four Iowans over the age of 65 do not have dental insurance and people are keeping their natural teeth longer. This collaboration is one more way to assist older Iowans with critical dental care, which is crucial to maintaining overall health.
Iowa residents can apply for the program at www.DentalLifeline.org/Iowa. Applicants must lack adequate income to pay for dental care and:
A DDS volunteer dentist sees patients in their own office on their own schedule and determines his or her own treatment plan. The Coordinator serves as liaison between the dentist’s staff and the patient, ensures that the patient arranges for assistance from specialists and laboratories, and handles all paperwork. To volunteer or apply for Iowa DDS, visit www.DentalLifeline.org/Iowa or contact Diane Wells, Iowa Coordinator, at (515) 251.8000.
Dental Lifeline Network is a national dental charity providing access to comprehensive dental care for people with disabilities or who are elderly or medically fragile and have no other way to get help. Through the overwhelming generosity of 15,000 volunteer dentists, 3,700 volunteer laboratories, dental products manufacturers and distributors and local communities, DLN transforms lives through the delivery of life-sustaining and even lifesaving care. These volunteers have provided over $350 million in dental treatment to more than 117,000 people in all 50 states and the District of Columbia since the start of the first program in Colorado 32 years ago.