Low Income Denture Program
Grantee: Seattle-King County Dental Society
Timeframe: July 2014 – June 2017 | Total Amount: $241,440
Year 1: July 2014 – June 2015. Amount: $100,720
Year 2: July 2015 – June 2016. Amount: $100,720
Year 3: July 2016 – June 2017. Amount: $40,000
Tooth loss, resulting from poor oral health, disproportionately impacts low income families—especially people of color for which English is a second language (Washington Department of Health’s 2010 Smile Survey). For adults living at 100% of the federal poverty level or lower, 58% have lost at least one permanent tooth, whereas for adults living above the poverty level, approximately 55% had retained all of their permanent teeth. Lost teeth impact adults’ self-esteem, job seeking chances and overall health. Dentures to replace lost teeth are approximately $3800 and out of reach for many of the working poor.
SKCDS will treat patients who have already had their teeth removed at our free complex oral extraction clinic based at Swedish Medical Center. Many of these patients have had most, if not all, of their teeth removed because years of neglect have made the teeth unsalvageable.
These patients have been referred by the Community Health Centers as unable to treat and have been screened by Project Access Northwest. The typical patient is low income, uninsured or underinsured for dental care. There is a higher percentage of non-English speakers and non-Caucasian ethnicities than in the general community.
SKCDS will partner with Project Access Northwest to case manage these patients and track outcomes. We will partner with Community Health Centers and the University of Washington’s School of Dentistry to treat these identified patients. Residents, dental students and graduate dental students, under supervision, will prepare and fit these dentures. (An additional outcome will be introducing dental students to the needs of this population and encouraging them to volunteer in the future.)
About Our Grantee
SKCDS is committed to improving oral health in our community through our members and alliances.