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Temple University Starts Community Dental Program For Kids

(Credit: Lynne Adkins)

(Credit: Lynne Adkins)

(Photo by Ed Fischer) Lynne Adkins
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By Lynne Adkins

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Giving kids a healthy smile is the goal of a new project by Temple University’s Kornberg School of Dentistry and United Healthcare.

“Project Engage” is designed to help young children living around Temple get the dental care they need to keep their mouths and teeth healthy.

Dr. Amid Ismail, dean of the dental school, says free help is available but families need to know it’s there — and understand why it’s important.

(Dr. Amid Ismail.  Credit: Lynne Adkins)

(Dr. Amid Ismail. Credit: Lynne Adkins)

“We are going to contact these children and visit them at home several times, talk to the caregivers about what we can provide them, that there is a network of five clinics who can see them, and if there are any barriers to prevent them from going we will discuss how we can help them,” Ismail (right) said today.

He says currently only about 30 percent of local children see a dentist on a regular basis, and he hopes to get that up to 50 percent in one year.  He said he believes the personal approach is the key.

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