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Bright smiles for dental chairs

Published:Wednesday | April 13, 2011 | 12:00 AM
Food For The Poor (FFP) Jamaica yesterday handed over 25 state-of-the-art Adec dental chairs to the Ministry of Health to boost the public-health dental-care system which is severely short of equipment and supplies. The combined value of the chairs, shown here at FFP's Ellerslie Pen, St Catherine, headquarters, is $12 million. - Gladstone Taylor/Photographer

The drive to promote improved public oral health care got a major boost on Tuesday with the donation of 25 state-of-the-art dental chairs with a combined value of US$135,375 (J$12 million) to the Ministry of Health by Food For The Poor.

There is a serious need for equipment and supplies for the public dental programme coordinated by Government, and critical among these are dental chairs, without which practitioners cannot properly examine patients. For this reason, Health Minister Rudyard Spencer described the donation as timely, in light of the Government's commitment to place more focus on dental health service for the upcoming financial year.

"As part of the focus on the prevention and treatment of chronic non-communicable diseases, dental health, we hope, will receive renewed attention, especially in the area of health promotion," Dr Kevin Harvey, acting chief medical officer, said during the presentation ceremony held at Food For The Poor's headquarters at Ellerslie Pen, St Catherine.

The ministry is in the process of acquiring another 16 dental chairs, which will also be distributed to public health facilities across the island to strengthen the dental-health programme.

- Christopher Serju