The Massachusetts Dental Society Foundation has awarded a $35,000 grant to the Lynn Community Health Center. It was one of six grants awarded to organizations throughout Massachusetts to improve the oral health of Massachusetts residents. The North Shore District of the Society presented the check to the Lynn Community Health Center at its March 8 monthly meeting at the Hawthorne Hotel in Salem.
MDS Foundation representative Dr. John Fisher presented the check to Executive Director Lori Berry and Associate Dental Director Herlivi Linares, DDS.
“We are proud to have contributed to such a significant expansion of dental services at the health center,” Fisher said. “This is a fine demonstration of the community-service aspect of the Massachusetts Dental Society, which steps beyond dentists being just for dentists. It is something of which we can all be justly proud.”
North Shore District Chairman Dr. Jeffrey Dornbush, who practices in Marblehead, spoke about the importance the Health Center plays in ensuring that all North Shore residents have access to quality oral health care.
“This clinic provides high-level care to a very large volume of patients whose only means of accessing dental care would otherwise be a visit to the emergency room,” he said. “The health center serves a high percentage of patients who have MassHealth or other state insurance plans. It has figured out how to work with them efficiently and cost effectively. We should support this effort.”
Dornbush made a compelling appeal to fellow district members to add their support to the Foundation’s by making a personal contribution, starting with his own pledge from the podium. By the end of the evening, more than $7,000 had been raised.
Berry expressed heartfelt appreciation to the MDS Foundation and to the North Shore District.
“We are grateful to all of you for your incredible support,” she said. “We want to make sure our patients keep smiling. These contributions will ensure that we will be able to increase the number of dental patients we see by 4,800 individuals. On behalf of all of them, I thank you.”
The Health Center will use the MDS Foundation grant to equip one of 12 operatories in the Health Center’s new dental clinic, now located in LCHC’s new expansion facility. This building is being funded in part by a $6 million capital campaign, which includes a $250,000 challenge grant from the Lynch Foundation. The MDS Foundation grant, and all other gifts to the campaign, will help the Health Center meet this challenge.