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Miami Children's Hospital Foundation Receives $443,793 for Dental Health Mobile Program
(10/18/2006)

MIAMI, FL - Miami Children's Hospital and Foundation have been awarded $443,793 from Health Foundation of South Florida to expand the Hospital’s Community Outreach Health on Wheels program. Healthy Smile, Happy Face, a mobile clinic dedicated exclusively to children’s oral health, will offer dental services and education to low-income children in central Miami, Brownsville, Homestead, Florida City, and Overtown beginning November 2006.

It is estimated that less than 20 percent of the 463,000 low-income children in Miami-Dade receive dental care each year. According to the US Surgeon General, tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease and low-income children are most affected. Children with poor oral health may face needless pain, decreased self-esteem, and restricted school activities. Oral health is essential to general health and overall performance in life. Miami Children's Hospital’s Healthy Smile, Happy Face program is designed to provide the necessary oral care to underserved children in our community.

The new dental health mobile will be staffed by a full-time pediatric dentist and two dental assistants. The program will be jointly directed by Deise C. Granado-Villar, MD, MPH, FAAP, Chief of Pediatrics and Medical Director for the Division of Preventive Medicine and Community Pediatrics and by Dr. Rosie Roldan, Director Pediatric Residency Dentistry Program for Miami Children’s Hospital. Funds from The Batchelor Foundation have recently been awarded to Miami Children's Hospital Foundation and will help leverage the Health Foundation’s support for this project.

Health Foundation of South Florida, a not-for-profit grantmaking foundation, is dedicated to expanding access to affordable, quality health care and providing funding that directly benefits the health and well being of underserved individuals in Broward, Miami-Dade and Monroe Counties. Since its inception in 1993, the Foundation has awarded more than $63 million in grants and direct program support.

Miami Children’s Hospital and Miami Children’s Hospital Foundation work together to ensure that no child will ever have to leave South Florida to receive the best pediatric care. As the only licensed specialty hospital exclusively for children in South Florida, Miami Children’s Hospital provides state-of-the-art pediatric care in a supportive, family-centered environment.

Miami Children’s Hospital Division of Preventive Medicine addresses issues affecting the health of all children, particularly those who are most vulnerable due to lack of insurance, or access issues. Programs range from well child care, immunizations to injury prevention and obesity, as well as to cultural adaptation to our health care system. Through the Health on Wheels program, the division has provided comprehensive medical care and education to 110,000 uninsured children in South Florida.

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