Alpha Omega Honored for Treating Holocaust Survivors

Dentistry Today


Henry Schein recently saluted the Washington, DC, chapter of the Alpha Omega International Dental Fraternity for its participation in the Alpha Omega-Henry Schein Cares Holocaust Survivors Oral Health Program, which provides free dental care to Holocaust survivors in need. Launched in November 2014 in response to the White House’s call to help survivors age with dignity and respect, the program has treated more than 500 people across the country.

“The oral health professionals being honored embody the spirit of generosity and kindness that serve as Alpha Omega’s guiding principles,” said Ben Williamowsky, DDS, ambassador of the Washington, DC, chapter. “Without their selfless volunteerism, local Holocaust survivors would not get the treatment they need. We thank them for their work and for setting an example for all of us.”

“The Alpha Omega-Henry Schein Cares Holocaust Survivors Oral Health Program’s impact can be measured in the restored function and smiles of the many people who have been treated thus far,” said Steven W. Kess, vice president of global professional relations at Henry Schein and the program’s co-chair. “These patients have lived through the unimaginable and survived incredible trauma, and we at Henry Schein thank Alpha Omega’s Washington, DC, chapter for contributing so greatly to this program’s success.”

The program provides care to people identified by the network of Jewish Family and Children’s Service agencies or other identified partner organizations as well as people of any faith who were victims of Nazi persecution and meet the program’s eligibility requirements. In addition to financial need, participation is prioritized by 3 factors: the elimination of pain, restoration of function, and lack of dental coverage. Clinicians determine each patient’s scope of care.

According to Henry Schein, a quarter of the 120,000 Holocaust survivors in the United States live in poverty. They often have special oral health needs since they suffered from prolonged nutritional deprivation and had little to no dental care access as children during World War II. The participating dentists were honored at a reception held at Woodmont Country Club in Rockville, Md, where the office of Sen. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md, presented Williamowsky with a Congressional Citation.

“Alpha Omega’s Washington, DC, chapter has shown that kindness and charity can have an incredible impact on the health and happiness of people in need,” said program co-chair and AO past international president Avi Wurman, DDS. “These oral health practitioners have helped Holocaust survivors eat without pain and smile proudly, and we thank them for upholding the ideals to which Alpha Omega’s members aspire.”

Related Articles

Dentists Honored for Treating Holocaust Survivors

Dentists Who Treat Holocaust Survivors Honored in Ohio

Community Clinic Nominated for Henry Schein Cares Medal