UB mobile dental unit targets underserved communities

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BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) – Dozens of people gathered at the University of Buffalo’s South Campus on Wednesday morning to celebrate the addition of a mobile dental van (S-Miles To Go).

UB’s School of Dentistry held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to welcome the second dental unit to its fleet.

The 40 foot long unit has everything you would usually see at your dentist.

WKBW/Kristen Mirand

The 40-foot-long mobile unit will target underserved communities in Genesee, Livingston, Orleans, Wyoming and Erie counties.

From dental chairs to state-of-the-art equipment and a waiting room, the mobile unit has it all.

Equipment inside the unit includes:

  • two dental chairs
  • state-of-the-art panoramic x-ray machine
  • digital x-ray
  • a sterilization center
  • wheelchair lift
  • electronic health record system
UB mobile dentist unit

WKBW/Kristen Mirand

The Mobile Unit is the second van in the UB School of Dental Medicine fleet.

Paula Fischer, director of school health programs and the rural dentistry project, said the unit’s goal is to reach more underserved communities in Western New York, including the elderly, people with disabilities and the homeless.

This will allow them to reach thousands of people in communities across Western New York who lack the transportation to access these services.

Between dental students having experiences with patients and reaching those in need, Fischer said this dental van is a win-win for everyone.

“The need is so great in the patients we see, so we want to give everyone something to be proud of, their smile, and boost their self-confidence,” Fischer said.

Fischer said the mobile van and equipment cost more than $700,000, which was funded by donations and grants.

UB mobile dentist unit

WKBW/Kristen Mirand

Fischer said the need for the mobile dental unit is great, especially in rural areas.

The first mobile unit launched by the school targets Chautauqua. Allegany and Cattaraugus counties.

The second unit launched Wednesday will reach residents of Genesee, Livingston, Orleans, Wyoming and Erie counties. The unit will be on the road serving this area by the end of the month.

To learn more about requesting service, you can find information here or call (716) 449-1674.

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