MINNEAPOLIS, July 11, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Minnesota Dental Association and the Minnesota Dental Foundation, in partnership with the North Dakota Dental Association and the North Dakota Dental Foundation, are bringing the Minnesota Mission of Mercy to the Moorhead-Fargo area on Friday, July 22 and Saturday, July 23. Mission of Mercy provides free dental care to children and adults who face barriers to accessing dental care. Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation is the signature sponsor of the event.
The floor of the Concordia College Memorial Auditorium will be transformed into a 100-chair clinic to treat as many as 2,000 patients from a wide geographic area. Free care being provided includes cleanings, fillings, extractions, limited treatment for partial dental appliances, and some root canals in front teeth. There is no advance sign up and patients will be seen on a first-come, first-served basis each day. The doors open at 5:30 a.m. and early arrival is encouraged.
The free care is being provided by more than 1,000 volunteers, including dentists from Minnesota and North Dakota, as well as hygienists, dental assistants, dental therapists, translators and lay volunteers. This is the fifth year a Mission of Mercy event is being held in Minnesota, with free care provided valued at over $4 million since 2012.
"Dentists are committed to ensuring that all Minnesotans have access to dental care," said Dr. Peter Cannon, a practicing dentist and President of the Minnesota Dental Association. "It is humbling to see such a great collaboration among lay and professional volunteers, but also unfortunate that there are still thousands of people, who, for a wide variety of reasons, cannot get the dental care they need."
Volunteer dentists are prepared to provide care to 2,000 patients. Dental services not provided are implants, crowns and root canals on molars, full dentures and removal of unexposed wisdom teeth.
Adults and children of all ages who are in reasonably good health qualify and will be welcome until treatment capacity is reached each day. Children under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. There will be no photo identification, social security number or any other personal documentation required. Anonymous demographic data collected is for evaluating the effectiveness of the event and future donor solicitation only.
Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation has provided over $750,000 for the Mission of Mercy in the past five years, including $150,000 again as this year's signature sponsor. Major financial and in-kind support is critical to the success of Mission of Mercy. Generous donors will provide approximately $267,000 in cash and in-kind donations. To date more than 30 organizations and individuals have made tax-deductible cash donations to cover the necessary dental equipment, supplies and food costs for this major event.
SOURCE Minnesota Dental Association