New Smiles for Five Veterans in 2017
New dentures from the College of Dentistry Department of Prosthodontics have given five veterans something to smile about.
Although the Veterans Administration (VA) does offer dental benefits, not every veteran is eligible. These veterans did not qualify for dentures based on current eligibility guidelines.
Dr. Julie Holloway, Department of Prosthodontics chair, participates in an annual event initiated by the American College of Prosthodontists called National Prosthodontists Awareness Week. The event promotes free oral health screenings, lectures and community service outreach. Since 2011, Dr. Holloway’s department has used that week to provide free dentures for veterans and those in need who lack dental health benefits.
Dr. Mike Kanellis, associate dean for patient care, has been pleased with the department’s commitment to provide free dentures to qualifying veterans. “We are able to help improve the oral health for some veterans who otherwise would not be able to receive care,” he says. It was a treatment process that took five consecutive days and five round trips for each veteran.
Dr. Miguel Garcia Loera and Victor
Dr. Matt French and Jessie
Dr. Salahaldeen Abuhammoud and Merle
Dr. Jia-Mahasap and Rob
(Above, left to right): Dr. Jia-Mahasap, Dr. Matt French, Jessie, Greg, Dr. Rick Williamson, Dr. Pantip Henprasert, Dr. Salahaldeen Abuhammoud, Victor, Dr. Miguel Garcia Loera, and Merle.
Five prosthodontic residents donated their time and expertise to provide the veterans with dentures. Besides the residents, Dr. Rick Williamson, Prosthodontics, was also involved.
Dr. Holloway sums up the experience for everyone: “It’s a labor of love and gratitude for their service.”