Last week, Dean David Sarrett, D.M.D., M.S., partnered with the Piedmont Virginia Dental Health Foundation to honor the Harvest Foundation, which operates the Martinsville Community Dental Clinic, with the Platinum Award for Exceptional Leadership in Improving Oral Health. The Community Dental Clinic serves as one of the VCU School of Dentistry’s service-learning rotation sites where senior dental and dental hygiene students get the opportunity to put their training to good use for the benefit of the community.
The Community Dental Clinic treated more than 2,000 people last year, including 674 children. VCU School of Dentistry students, supervised by the clinic dentist and other volunteer dentists from the Martinsville area, treat a diverse patient base that may have different oral health issues than the patients students regularly treat at the school’s clinics. These students are immersed into the experience of a private practice or community dental practitioner, and they stay in housing provided by the Piedmont Virginia Dental Health Foundation, led by Dr. Mark Crabtree (D.D.S. ’85).
VCU students consistently rank the Community Dental Clinic at the top of their rotation sites, largely because of the support and kindness they receive from the community. To thank the school, its students and Dean Sarrett for their commitment to improving oral health in the community, Henry County and the city of Martinsville in turn recognized the school with a resolution plaque and a key to the city. Dean Sarrett will share these honors at an upcoming faculty meeting.
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