OkMOM volunteers treat 1,786 patients
March 04, 2013
By Stacie Crozier, ADA News staff
Lawton, Okla.—Nearly 1,800 patients received free dental care at Lawton's Great Plains Coliseum Feb. 1-2 during the fourth annual Oklahoma Mission of Mercy dental clinic.
Advocacy: Oklahoma State Legislature Speaker of the House T. W. Shannon (center) listens as co-chair Dr. Juan Lopez (right) explains how the Oklahoma Mission of Mercy functions during a tour of the free dental clinic on Feb. 1. Rep. Ann Coody (far left) and ODA President and OkMOM co-chair (left) Todd Bridges look on.
Outreach: Dr. Adam Cohlmia, an Oklahoma City dentist, and his patient give a thumbs up at the Oklahoma Mission of Mercy in Lawton. The clinic provided more than $1.1 million in donated dental services.
According to the Oklahoma Dental Association, the first patient arrived and started the line at 7:30 a.m. Jan. 31—a full day before the clinic. A total of 1,786 patients from Oklahoma and Texas came to Lawton for dental care. At least 1,809 volunteers from Oklahoma and Texas donated their time and talent in Lawton.
“I am so happy with the number of people we were able to help during this event,” said Dr. Todd Bridges, ODA president and OkMOM co-chair. “This year's mission is particularly dear to my heart since we helped many people in my hometown of Lawton. I am truly thankful to all of the volunteers that came to provide dental care.”
The total value of the donated dental services was $1,107,138—an average of $619.90 of dental treatment per patient. Dental professionals performed 7,042 dental procedures, including cleanings, fillings, extractions and anterior root canals. Since the first Oklahoma Mission of Mercy in 2010, more than 5,700 patients have received more than $3 million in donated dental services.
“Once again we have seen the powerful impact of the volunteer spirit for which Oklahoma is so well known,” said John Gladden, president and CEO, Delta Dental of Oklahoma. “By supporting the work of hundreds of volunteer dental professionals, we are able to help the less fortunate access desperately needed dental care. And, caring for our fellow Oklahomans is at the very heart of our not-for-profit mission. On behalf of the Delta Dental of Oklahoma Oral Health Foundation, I want to extend our heartfelt gratitude to all the OkMOM volunteers who made this remarkable event possible.”
The OkMOM event was presented by the ODA, the Oklahoma Dental Foundation and the Delta Dental of Oklahoma Oral Health Foundation. Other sponsors include DENTSPLY Tulsa Dental Specialties, Comanche County Department of Health, Instrumentarium SOREDEX, the McMahon Foundation and Medical Waste Services. More than 70 sponsors and donors provided services and food for the volunteers and patients both days.
For more information, visit the ODA website: okda.org; the Oklahoma Dental Foundation website: okdf.org; and the Delta Dental of Oklahoma Oral Health Foundation website: at DDOKFoundation.org. Or visit the ODA Facebook page.