25 September 2023

School dental program opens wider

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The ACT’s third Mobile Dental Clinic is now in operation with the aim of ensuring that all school students in the Territory have access to better oral health outcomes.

Minister for Health and Wellbeing, Meegan Fitzharris said that while the ACT was fortunate enough to have a very good public dental program, children in low socio-economic groups experienced almost twice as many cavities as others.

“Parents report transport and cost as a barrier to access dental services,” Ms Fitzharris said.

“The service will be run throughout Canberra and will improve the physical access to dental treatment facilities by visiting targeted schools in our community.”

Minister for Education and Early Childhood Development, Yvette Berry said the new Mobile Dental Clinic was targeted at schools and would ensure all children in the community had access to oral health services.

“The Future of Education Strategy sets out very clearly that equity is the key for good life outcomes and this announcement is based on the same principle,” Ms Berry said.

“For many children, public dental services provide the foundations for their future oral health and dental care practices.”

She said dental decay was the leading oral disease and one of the most prevalent chronic diseases in children.

“Services such as this new Mobile Dental Clinic will help prevent children from developing oral health issues,” Ms Berry said.

The clinic joins two other Mobile Dental Clinics already in operation which deliver dental services to retirement communities as well as vulnerable and disadvantaged people in the community.

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