IRON MOUNTAIN - CareFree Dental is available to provide treatment for people who can't afford to pay for dental care and don't qualify for assistance through government assistance programs or community clinics.
A group of concerned dental professionals and community members who have come together to create a free, non-profit, volunteer community dental clinic for Dickinson and Florence counties.
CareFree Dental encompasses more than 35 volunteers including 10 area dentists involved in the clinic.
Procedures performed at the clinic include fillings, extractions, and treatment of infection. These services will be treated on a first come, first need basis. Future plans for CareFree Dental are to provide teeth cleanings.
Adults, age 18 and older, who are residents of Dickinson and Florence counties, are eligible to attend the clinic. Patients need to provide proof of residency and can't be covered by any dental insurance or dental assistance program.
CareFree Dental is located at Suite 400 of the Northern Michigan Bank building, 500 S. Stephenson Ave. in Iron Mountain.
The Salvation Army is providing phone service for the clinic. Patients may call 779-5717 Monday through Friday. The clinic is open Fridays from 8 a.m. to 12 noon starting Sept.10.
Organizers noted that the clinic has been open four Fridays and about 40 people have been seen. They can register and see 10-11 patients a day.
The clinic has been open for four Fridays and approximately 40 people have been seen and served. They register seeing 10 to 11
patients a day.
"CareFree Dental would like to also educate and improve overall health while dealing with other dental issues. Dental infections have recently been linked as significant risk factors in serious health
conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and premature births. When left untreated, dental infections can spread to the heart, eyes, airway, lung, brain. In these areas the infections can be very serious and can cause death," noted Ted Fornetti, a spokesperson for the clinic.
He added that they have had an excellent response from the community through donations and volunteers. "The turnout has been great. And we do not want to miss an opportunity to thank Northern Michigan Bank. They have been tremendous with their support of monetary donations and space to hold the clinic. Our success has definitely been the people, staff, volunteers and donations that have come in to the clinic."
Volunteers and donations are always needed. CareFree Dental is a non-profit corporation and has applied for 501c3 status.
For more information, contact Kathy Anderson at 779-0901 or Ted A. Fornetti at firstname.lastname@example.org
Donations can be sent to CareFree Dental of Dickinson and Florence Inc., P.O. Box 205, Iron Mountain, Mich. 49801.
"We hope to continue to grow and offer more services in the future. Because of public participation of volunteers and donations, we should continue with this worthwhile program for a long time to come. This community is fantastic," Fornetti said.