Clark County Dentists Making Smiles for Free

The Wait is Over.

During the first and second week of April, local dentists will be helping the Free Clinic of SW Washington reduce, or eliminate, the waiting list for urgent dental services for uninsured patients in Clark County.

The wait for urgent dental needs is about 5 months, and includes about 700 people; and that’s when Stephen Hendricks, an AmeriCorp Volunteer with the Free Clinic of SW Washington, came up with the idea to recruit local dentists for help. The Free Clinic will pre-screen patients in need of extractions and fillings and help patients make it to their appointments with local dentists.

The first week of April is National Public Health Week, and the goal was to get 50 local dentists willing to treat patients from the Free Clinic’s waiting list.  “As of tonight, we have 53 dentists signed up and hope to treat at least 300 people the first week of April with more to follow the rest of the month.”, according to Dr. Wanda Palena of  Palena Dental Arts in Salmon Creek. “It is very exciting to see our community come together this way.” 

In my opinion, heroes don’t wear capes or masks or leap tall buildings in a single bound; they wear purple gloves and tell you to say, “Ahhhh.”


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