THURSTON COUNTY DENTAL ACCESS NETWORK (TCDAN)
Dentists stepping forward in an innovative partnership
to offer real solutions to access to dental care
TCDAN is a network of community partners which includes dentists, other dental professionals, local area safety net clinics, and the Thurston County Public Health and Social Services Department, whose purpose is to improve access to basic and emergent dental care for impoverished children, adults, and seniors living in Thurston County through financial and direct care means. TCDAN envisions a future where lack of financial means is no longer a barrier to oral health care for those in need.
In 2003 the Olympia Union Gospel Mission and Thurston/Mason Counties dentists joined forces to open a two-chair dental clinic at the mission with the purpose of serving the community. Since it's inception, the OUGM dental clinic has remained the only free clinic open to the public in Southwestern Washington. The majority of patients seen at the dental clinic are the working poor who have no insurance and no means to pay for dental care. Fifteen percent are homeless; many have a place to live but live below the poverty line. Some have never been to a dentist before and others haven't had dental care for years. In 2007 the dentists and OUGM took another step and went the second mile to meet the need, launching a network of dentists who, through referral by the mission, accept case-managed patients in their offices.
Are You a Dental Professional or Community - Minded Individual?
You can get involved with this excellent project by volunteering time or resources to support the OUGM free dental clinic. For information about how you can help: go to the OUGM website www.ougm.org or or
Would you like to make a contribution to TCDAN and/or the OUGM Free Dental Clinic?
Send your contribution payable to:
Community Foundation of South Puget Sound
(make note it is for the TCDAN fund)
111 Market Street NE, Suite 375
Olympia, WA 98501
Olympia Union Gospel Mission-Free Dental Clinic
PO Box 7668
Olympia, WA 98507