CDA Cares Treats 1,506 People at Volunteer Clinic

Dentistry Today


The California Dental Association’s volunteer dental clinic, CDA Cares, provided $1.25 million in free dental services to 1,506 people at the Kern County Fairgrounds in Bakersfield on October 6 and 7. Also, CDA Cares strives to educate the public and policymakers about the importance of good oral health and the need for an adequately funded dental safety net, including a well-functioning Denti-Cal program.

“With such a tremendous oral health need in our state, it’s incredible to see how dentists can come together, volunteering their time and skills, to provide care and education to more than 1,500 people in just 2 days,” said CDA president Clelan Ehrler, DDS. “We appreciate the support received from Kern County and the community in order to host such a successful event in the Bakersfield area.”

During the clinic, dentists and dental professionals provided 10,036 procedures including fillings, extractions, cleanings, and oral health education to patients who otherwise face challenges in accessing oral healthcare. Volunteer technicians in the clinic’s dental lab area worked to provide 125 complete and partial dentures and repairs.

“At the end of the day, it’s extremely gratifying to know so many lives have been changed and see so many smiles walking out, not just from the people whoeceived treatment, but from those who volunteered too,” said Robert Reed, DDS, a local organizer. “These events are really very special.”

CDA Cares Bakersfield drew 1,158 volunteers who donated their time and services, including 524 health professionals such as dentists, dental hygienists, dental assistants, nurses, and lab technicians, as well as 144 dental students and hundreds of community volunteers who assisted with registration, translation, data entry, and escorting patients.

The event also was supported by major sponsors including Henry Schein, Patterson Dental, Western Dental, GES Exposition Services, and the DentaQuest Foundation. The next CDA Cares clinic will be held next year in Anaheim, April 27-28.

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