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Army hosts ADA leadership

They came to the sprawling Fort Sam Houston in a spirit of awareness—the officers and trustees of the American Dental Association and leaders past and present of the Army Dental Corps met in a context of war and recovery.

"Part of this is awareness," said Maj. Gen. Russell Czerw, 25th and current chief of the Army Dental Corps—and a dentist—who extended the invitation and hosted the pre-session tour of Fort Sam Oct. 15. He spoke of the mutual awareness of military and civilian dentists as well as awareness of "all our servicemen and women" and those in treatment for the injuries of war. "We appreciate all your support," he told the ADA officials, meeting with them the day after he returned from a week in Iraq.

"The partnership is definitely alive," ADA President Mark J. Feldman said later in summarizing the tour of medical and dental treatment, education, research and training facilities.

The ADA visitors began their tour, just a 10-minute bus ride from annual session headquarters, at the Center for the Intrepid, the state-of-the-art National Armed Forces Physical Rehabilitation Center with its focus on "amputation awareness" and coordination of care for amputees. The CFI provides military service members with severe extremity injuries and amputations the opportunity to maximize their ability to live and work productively, reintroducing them to the "activities of daily living."

The tour included a briefing by Dr. Thomas MacKenzie, oral surgery chair at Fort Sam Houston's Brooke Army Medical Center, and visits to the U.S. Army Medical Department Center & School and the U.S. Army Medical Department Museum. In addition to heading the Army Dental Corps, Gen. Czerw commands the U.S. Army Medical Department Center & School.

Dr. John S. Findley, ADA president-elect, chatted with students taking a course in preventive dentistry. Specialists Jennifer Warren and Justin Arredondo, Army dental assistants, told him they were interested in becoming Army dental hygienists.