Release Date: 01-13-2006 Click here for a larger view
(Honesdale, January 12, 2006)… “This move is a reflection of how much need there is in this community for dental care for young people who may not have the means to see a dentist otherwise,” says Vance Jones, DDS, a fulltime dentist with the Together for Health Dental Clinic. On January 16th, the clinic, the only one of its kind in Wayne or Pike County, will officially open in a new site at the Stourbridge Mall, about a half mile from its current location on Park Street in Honesdale. The new location, a former deli, will be equipped with six “operatories” or exam rooms—three more than the Park Street site.
“The new site—and additional staff— will help us significantly reduce out wait list,” adds James Hockenbury, Director of Ancillary Services for Wayne Memorial Health System and the overseer for the Together for Health (TFH) Dental Clinic. He says the clinic’s client base has been growing so much and so fast that the current extended waiting period, particularly to see a dental hygienist, is roughly six to eight weeks. “We are looking to hire another hygienist and cut down the wait time by at least 50%.”
The TFH Clinic, launched in 1998 with a state grant, grew out of a Community Needs Assessment commissioned by the Wayne Memorial Community Advisory Board, a group of civic-minded volunteers from across the WMH service area. It is unique in that it serves children—up to age 21—whose only method of payment may be government-funded medical assistance. In its first 18 months of operation, the clinic saw 2400 patient visits. Last year, 2005, the clinic recorded 3,875 visits.
“It’s clear that the availability of affordable dental care is lacking for many families in our area,” says Julie Seiler, Chairperson of the C