Adult Dental Program
The Health Access Network, known for primary care, ophthalmology, pediatric dental care, and mental health, is also proud to announce the opening of the new Adult Dental Program, one of the latest “fingers” of HANDS. The clinic is slated to open February 2012 at the HANDS patient care facility on S. US 1 in Ft. Pierce.
"We anticipate a large number of patients needing free dental care who are financially eligible to participate in the HANDS program," said Dr. Strawn. "Many lower income adults can't afford emergency care, much less regular dental services.”
Dr. Strawn previously served as the dental director in St. Lucie Counties Health Department’s dental clinic. “18 months ago I learned of plans for the HANDS medical clinic and asked the leaders if they would consider including space for a dental facility at the clinic location. The idea was well received and unanimously approved by the board of directors." Dr. Strawn said.
Sponsorship opportunities are still available for naming rights to the adult dental clinic.
Florida ranks worst in the nation in access to dental care. Poor dental care can lead to lost teeth or poor dentition which may make it difficult to eat. Plaque build-up irritates the gums enough to cause bleeding, which allows microscopic amounts of bacteria to enter the bloodstream. The presence of plaque and tooth decay has been noted to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and makes diabetes more difficult to control.
“This is about comprehensive care from primary care to dental health, our community is responding to the need,” HANDS Executive Director Doug Anderson said, “It is particularly important to provide free dental care during such a challenged economical period, when a lot of families simply cannot afford proper insurance.” He also said that through the pediatric dental program, “what we’ve seen in our children is approximately 50% of the children who have been screened struggle with some kind of dental problem that needs treatment.”
“St Lucie County is working to have the most comprehensive dental program within the state of Florida for its residents, “ said HANDS’ Deputy Executive Director Jim Gilbert, “To meet this objective HANDS will begin offering free dental services for those who qualify.”
He has received over two thousand post graduate hours of continuing education, including training in mini implant protocol and placement. His office serves as a training facility for Indian River State College's dental assisting program.
For Those in Need
To find out if you qualify for free dental health assistance, Visit our Eligibility page and download the application. Fill out all forms, and bring in the forms and a valid identification to the clinic at
St. Lucie County Logistics Center
3855 South U.S. 1, Suite B Fort Pierce, FL 34982
Emails are preferred: Contact Us via Email.
You can also call the clinic for assistance with your application at (772) 344-2541, Monday-Friday during regular office hours.