Dr. Christopher Delecki,
Photo courtesy of Seattle Children’s Hospital
Nate Hulings filed this report for The Olympian:
“Dr. Chris Delecki would like to see kids in his dental chair as soon as they have teeth. But for low-income families, getting their children to the dentist at any age is a challenge of time and money.
‘They are kind of falling through the cracks,’ said Delecki, a dentist who works for Childrens Hospital in Seattle. He was waiting for patients Tuesday [July 26] aboard the Smile- Mobile, a three-chair dental clinic program through the Washington Dental Service Foundation that parked at Lydia Hawk Elementary School.
Nearly 60 percent of elementary school children in Washington have had dental decay. Two-year olds in Washington are more than twice as likely as children nationwide to have dental decay, according to the foundation.
This is the second time this year the SmileMobile has visited Lacey, a reality that reflects the need of the community, said Monika Foro, site coordinator for the Washington Dental Service Foundation.
Trips through Lacey and Yelm earlier this year brought out about 200 children, she said.
Foro said one reason for the higher need is that she thinks the county has a large migrant population that needs services. The program also links up with North Thurston Public Schools to contact low-income children and others who need help.
The SmileMobile plans to be back in Lacey in January or February of next year.”
Read more on the Smile-Mobile.