Ottawa Charitable Dental Clinics Update – October/November 2013

Posted on November 30, 2013

Save-the-DateVolunteer Appreciation — 22 January 2014

All current and past volunteers as well as supporters and encouragers of The Ottawa Mission Dental Clinic and the PODS are invited to join us for a get together and thank you celebration at the Mill St. Brew Pub (555 Wellington Street, in the LeBreton Flats sector of Ottawa) on Wednesday, 22 January 2014 from 5-7 pm.

Wet your whistle and whet your appetite on us with free pub fare and a brewery tour!  Of course there will be lots of great door prizes, draws and a 50-50 raffle.

This event is sponsored and hosted by our community partners: Dr. Gordon Schwartz, Periodontist @ Gumdocs (613-234-1211 and Pierre Rozon, RDT @ Milident Dental Lab (819-243-5654). Give them a call to let them know you’re joining us!

Homeless Army Veteran’s Makeover

Changing someones outward appearance can help to restore dignity, re-establish a sence of self worth and play a role in giving the homeless a vision of a what their future can be. But none of us are naive enough to think that it won’t also take significant emotional support, financial resources, housing assistance, mental health intervention, vocational training and spiritual transformation to make a lasting difference.  Thanks for being part of this restorative process.

brushingasideBrushing Aside Obstacles to Dental Care

We were recently invited to give insight on two Ottawa area initiatives that seek to address access to dental health care at the Canadian Mental Health Association 2013 National Conference; one from a systems-level approach and the other by the provision of direct dental care services.

At the systems level, CMHA representative Lisa Jamieson discussed the results of a recent needs assessment report and Round Table Discussion on Access to Dental Care for ODSP Recipients in Ottawa, where members of the dental community and Ontario government staff participated.  The “next steps” from the Round Table are now serving as the beginning of an action plan to help address this piece of the access problem.

At the service delivery level, some access barriers that are being addressed by the Ottawa Mission Dental Clinic and PODS were reviewed by Dr. Tom Harle who shared his knowledge and experience and  illustrated how various delivery models can reach people who have been excluded from dental care and highlighted the positive impact dental care has had on people’s overall health and well-being.

A growing number of Canadians have no access to dental care

Quality dental care is so far beyond the financial reach of many in this country, one man was illegally practicing without a license from his bedroom in B.C. And he had hundreds of customers. How did it come to this? Listen how.

Networking with Free Dental Clinics

FYI, The Health Care for the Homeless Dental Clinic in Albuquerque, New Mexico operated by Chief Dentist in Charge, Dr. Shirlena Waters recently connected with us to compare notes on patient and volunteer scheduling and managing the client no-show phenomena. Seems like we have lots in common!

Christmas Season Gift Givers

Dr. William Wayne gave surgical blades and anaesthetic.

Dr. Serene Yu gave $2,500.

Trillium Dental gave rubber dams, mixing wells, x-ray sensor sheaths, dental needles, composite resin, mouthguard material, resin cement, bur blocks, self etching adhesive, prophy angles, burs, applicator tips, hand instruments and etchant.

Sinclair Dental Supply (Linda Corbett) gave hand instruments and alginate.

Gumdocs (Dr. Schwartz) are giving hygiene kits and toothbrushes.

Muriel mission1PODS on the Mission Field

For those of you who volunteer with the local Portable Ottawa Dental ServicePODS (like Muriel Laughton, RDH and Wendy Chung, DDS shown in the photos above and below), you may recognize the mobile dental set up that they used while on their two week (19 October – 2 November 2013) mission trip to Cambodia with our registered charity Health Teams International (Canada).

Why not consider putting your skills at work on the foreign mission field next year as a member of one our Christian health teams. We have groups preparing to head out to Cameroon, Cambodia, Haiti, Ethiopia and Myanmar. Contact me at for more details.

Free Dental Day — 21 December 2013

Smiles on Us is a local, Ottawa-based initiative to help provide free dental care to families in need. Founded by Chapman Mills Dental, Smiles On Us is an event that brings together local dentists, oral surgeons and hygienists, as well as public and primary healthcare professionals and other dedicated volunteers to provide free oral health services to local Ottawa residents.If you would like to volunteer your services for the day (Saturday 21 December 2013) send an e-mail to Dr. John Fayad at or check out this link.

bethanyhope1PODS Moves On

This month the PODS finished up its’ 9 month rotation at the Salvation Army’s Bethany Hope Centre with a thank you reception and presentation which was accepted on behalf of the PODS volunteers by Dr. Harle and Anthea Chang, RDT.  We are moving the mobile clinic over to St. Mary’s Home in December and will be operating at that location from January until September 2014.

Christian Community Health Fellowship Conference

May 8-10, 2014 — Altanta, Georgia

Best Practices and Practical Insights from Successful Community Dental  Health Programs, is the name of the workshop I am aiming to present at the 2014 Christian Community Health Fellowship Annual Conference in the Spring.

We will be part of a program that includes over 50 small group presentations and plenary sessions covering a diverse range of community health topics from a Christian perspective including:

  • avoiding mission drift
  • the role of specialties in community health
  • understanding poverty
  • steps in starting a clinic
  • missional medicine
  • improving patient compliance
  • cultural competency
  • health promotion partnerships
  • holistic appraoches

If this is something you think you might be interested in, give me a call (613-722-8191) and we can coordinate our arrangemments.