Since opening in 2007, the Dental Clinic has become a model for modern dentistry in Tanzania. Today, it is one of Tanzania’s most well-equipped and professionally staffed clinics and training facilities. In its 10+ years of service, the Dental Clinic has served more than 25,000 patients.
According to recent statistics, there is one dentist for every 120,000 patients in Tanzania. Oral health education and prevention is one of DCMC’s ongoing goals to benefit area communities. Patients often travel great distances to receive care at the Dental Clinic, which provides the following under the leadership of Dr. Charles Rabemahefa with assistance from Dr. Francis Mdoe:
High-quality, low-cost crowns and bridges are made for Dental Clinic patients using state-of-the-art technology donated by National Dentex in Boston. National Dentex’s donated computer equipment scans the model of a patient’s tooth that has been prepared for a crown or bridge. The scan is sent via internet to Green Laboratory in Heber Springs, Arkansas, and a high-quality, accurate product is created overnight form ceramic material and returned by mail. Green Laboratory provided 20 hours of training via Skype to the Dental Clinic professionals to help them bring this world-class technology to their patients.
Since its beginning, prevention education has been a key component of the Dental Clinic’s mission. In 2015, more than 450 students from neighboring Ntyuka Village were examined through the Dental Outreach Program. Of those, nearly 70% required urgent dental care. To ensure they are treated, the clinic has reserved time just for them. Based on the success of this program and the overwhelming need for oral health care, as well as a recent $50,000 gift from Westwood Lutheran Church, the clinic is currently expanding this program.
The Dental Clinic models improved 24/7 dental care and technology for Tanzania. The clinic: