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Friday, March 24, 2023
ArlingtonFree Clinic augments its oral-health offerings

Free Clinic augments its oral-health offerings

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The Arlington Free Clinic has used grant funding from the Virginia Health Care Foundation to hire a new dental hygienist to provide on-site dental cleanings, which had been halted during much of the early pandemic.

Recognizing that poor oral health disproportionately impacts those in poverty, AFC established a modest dental program in 2015 with the support of Arlington County Department of Human Services (DHS) that offered part-time use of one of its dental chairs. Three years later, funding from the Virginia Health Care Foundation and a capital campaign raised the funds needed to build, outfit and staff a new three-chair dental clinic onsite.

“Dental services are critical for the Arlington Free Clinic’s patients, who are not eligible for Virginia Medicaid’s dental benefit,” officials said.
The part-time, bilingual (English/Spanish) dental-hygienist position was filled in September.

While the Free Clinic’s dental program continued to provide in-person services as needed non-stop throughout the pandemic, anything that could be done “virtually” was transitioned to telehealth for safety purposes.


“We are thrilled to once again be able to offer important oral-hygiene services to our patients,” Free Clinic officials said.

This is the second year of the grant, which also supports a portion of the clinic’s dentist.

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