The Tenth Kansas Mission of Mercy Dental Project Completed
by Kansas Dental Charitable Foundation on Monday, January 24, 2011
Topeka, KS – The Kansas Dental Charitable Foundation completed its tenth Kansas Mission of Mercy Dental Project this past weekend in Hutchinson, KS. The project provides free dental care to low-income individuals in a first come, first served clinic. The KMOM Hutchinson project treated 1638 patients with dental care valued at $1.25 million.
“This was the largest project we have ever done in terms of dollars of care,” said Greg Hill, Executive Director of the Kansas Dental Charitable Foundation.
To date, more than 19,000 patients have received dental care through the KMOM project and nearly $10 million in care has been delivered.
“One number that always sticks out in people’s minds is the number of tooth extractions that we do at a project. In Hutchinson, we extracted a total of 4389 teeth. In our ten projects combined, we have done 30,856 extractions.”
The Kansas Mission of Mercy provides this free service once a year at a different location in the state. Projects in the past have been held in Garden City (twice), Kansas City, Pittsburg, Salina, Wichita, Topeka, Manhattan and Independence. Locations and dates in Kansas City are being explored for the 2012 project.
“While talking with patients, every single one I spoke with said that without adult Medicaid, they simply were unable to get the dental care they need,” Hill said. “It’s one thing for a dentist to provide charitable work in their office ,which many do, but it’s something entirely different when we are looking at this many people.”
According to a report by the Pew Foundation, Kansas Dentists provide $46.3 million in charity and reduced-fee care to patients every year.
“This amounts to $33,000 in care done by every dentist across the state annually. In comparison, Kansas Medicaid paid $27 million for dental treatment in FY2007,” Hill said.