The Delta Dental Community Care Foundation has awarded the Columbia University College of Dental Medicine (CDM) a $585,000 grant to purchase a new mobile dental clinic to serve children in Harlem, Washington Heights, Inwood, and the Bronx through the school’s Community DentCare program.
Replacing an outdated model, the new van will help CDM improve access to dental care for underserved children, many of whom rely on the clinic as their sole source of oral healthcare. It also will reach previously inaccessible sites, reduce costs, and upgrade the clinic with state-of-the-art equipment custom-designed for CDM.
DentCare’s current mobile clinic visits nearly 70 Head Start, daycare, and foster care facilities, providing more than 3,000 dental visits per year regardless of ability to pay. Through six school-based clinics in underserved communities, DentCare has provided about 26,000 dental visits in the last three years. The program also offers oral health screenings to the elderly at local community centers.
“As the largest provider of oral healthcare in our upper Manhattan communities, Columbia University relies on our mobile clinic to care for children most in need,” said Christian S. Stohler, DMD, DrMedDent, dean of CDM and senior vice president of the Columbia University Irving Medical Center. “Delta Dental’s generosity will help us improve our facilities as well as our reach. We are deeply grateful for their generosity.”
“Our Foundation’s mission is to increase access to quality dental care, and we could not do so without dedicated partners such as Columbia University,” said Karen Robinson, vice president of corporate affairs for Delta Dental and executive director of the Delta Dental Community Care Foundation. “Together we can make a lasting impact to improve the health and enhance the lives of children and adults in New York.”
The grant is one of 20 given in New York this year by the Delta Dental Community Care Foundation to help improve the oral health of disadvantaged children and adults by removing barriers to quality dental care. Since its inception in 2011, the Foundation has awarded more than $2.5 million in grants to organizations throughout New York.
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