April 19, 2018

Schedule Your Free Appointment Now! Dental Screening Clinic for Elders

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Community VNA’s Elder Dental Program Offers May 5th Clinic in Attleboro

Volunteer dentist Dr. Pierce with students and instructor at Free Dental Screening Clinic.

ATTLEBORO--Oral health is a key component of general health and wellbeing. Low income seniors in particular are struggling. According to a study by “Oral Health in America” close to 70 % of seniors do not have dental insurance. The primary reason seniors do not have dental insurance is that the two public health programs in Massachusetts (Medicaid and Medicare) provide little or no dental benefits. Seniors with limited means have few options for help affording dental care.

The Elder Dental Program of Community VNA in Attleboro seeks to reduce barriers to dental careby holding two free dental screening clinics per year. The spring clinic will be held on Saturday, May 5th from 8:45am to 1:00pm at Community VNA, 10 Emory Street in Attleboro. To schedule your appointment for a dental screening call 774-203-1906. Appointments are free and open to seniors age 60 or over, living in Massachusetts.

Clinic participants will receive a dental screening exam and will have the opportunity to discuss the findings with the dentist in the clinic’s relaxed, friendly setting. Dentists from the area, including Dr. Donald Pierce, volunteer to examine patients for problems with their teeth, gums, and dentures.
Participants will also be screened for oral cancers and have the opportunity to receive free denture cleaning and labeling provided by students from the Massasoit Community College’s Dental Assisting. Students will also offer tips and answer questions about good oral hygiene. All students are under the supervision of their instructor as they participate in the screening clinic.
Nutritional information will be provided about food choices to those experiencing chewing problems, dry mouth, medication interactions, and other concerns.


“More than three-quarters of older adults in Massachusetts don’t have dental insurance,” explains Dr. Pierce, a North Attleboro dentist and planning committee co-chair. “Many of the seniors who attended the free screening clinic haven’t been to a dentist in a while, so they have concerns they want to discuss. At the screening clinic we take time to talk with them and answer their questions.”
It is the mission of the Elder Dental Program to support oral health needs and provide education for seniors. Studies have shown that lack of oral health care can lead to serious overall health risks. According to the CDC, studies link oral infections with diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Most oral diseases are preventable. During the screening participants can also learn more about the Elder Dental Program, which helps low income seniors to access local dental services provided at reduced fees based on a sliding scale.
Organized by Community VNA’s Elder Dental Program, the clinic has been underwritten by a grant from the Attleboro Rotary Club and is funded in part by a grant from Bristol Elder Services, Inc. through contracts with the Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs and by a grant from United Way of Greater Attleboro/Taunton.
For more information, please call 774-203-1326 or email elderdental@communityvna.com.

About Community VNA
Community VNA has been dedicated to enhancing health, wellness and quality of life for more than 100 years, providing a range of services throughout the 13 cities and towns of the greater Attleboro region. Services include: Home Health Care, Hospice Care, Palliative Care, Private Care, Adult Day Health Care, Alzheimer’s Assistance Program, as well as Lifeline services and annual Elder Dental Clinics.
Community VNA has been awarded 2017 Home Care Elite Status (ranked among the top 25% of home health care agencies nationwide) marking the sixth year of this recognition. This recognition is based on publicly available performance measures in quality outcomes, best practice implementing patient experience, quality improvement and consistency, and financial performance.
For more information, visit www.communityvna.com, or follow Community VNA on Facebook.

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