Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation’s recent grants to serve as the signature sponsor of the Minnesota Dental Association’s Mission of Mercy along with a grant to Family HealthCare, join the efforts of five additional regional grants totaling more than $1 million to various programs to bring better oral health to Moorhead and the northwestern Minnesota region.
These community investments share a goal of improving access to dental care and patient oral health. One of the Moorhead-based grants gets off the ground this weekend where as many as 2,000 patients will receive free dental care.
Minnesota Mission of Mercy Investment
For the fifth consecutive year, Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation is providing the lead financial support for the Minnesota Mission of Mercy, scheduled for Moorhead on Friday, July 22 and Saturday, July 23. Since 2011, Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation has invested $750,00, which includes a $150,000 grant this year. Since its inception five years ago, the Minnesota Mission of Mercy has provided over $4 million in free dental services to children and adults who face barriers to accessing dental care in Duluth, Bemidji and Mankato. The weekend event is coordinated by the Minnesota Dental Association in partnership with the North Dakota Dental Association, and their respective foundations.
Family Healthcare Grant
In an effort to provide on-going care to Mission of Mercy patients in the surrounding Moorhead area, Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation also made a $100,000 grant to Family HealthCare, a Federally Qualified Health Center with a dental clinic in Moorhead. The grant provides two dental chairs and associated costs to expand dental services to patients in need.
“We sincerely appreciate the grant from Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation. A significant need exists for access to affordable, quality dental care in our community and the grant further enables Family HealthCare to provide increased access,” stated Patrick Gulbranson, chief executive officer of Family HealthCare. “Thank you to Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation for partnering with us in addressing the needs of our community.”
Additional Funding For Dental Care In The Region
Dental of Minnesota Foundation has made additional investments to expand dental care options for people in northwestern Minnesota including:
- A grant for $172,000 to Northern Dental Access in Bemidji whom provides school-based oral health screenings and dental sealants to drive the “Smiles@School” program, a proven approach to prevent cavities. Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation has also pledged $400,000 to Northern Dental Access for a new dental clinic aimed at caring for public program patients. The pledge is conditioned on the Minnesota Legislature passing a bonding bill, which will provide public funding for a portion of the new dental clinic to be revisited in a possible future, special session of the legislature.
- “Dedicated to Minnesota Dentists” a loan repayment for service program to provide access to patient care by paying up to $200,000 of student loans in exchange for the recipient practicing for five years in Greater Minnesota and seeing a percentage of public program patients. The program has supported two new dentists in the northwestern Minnesota region in Warroad and International Falls. Other loan repayment for service and patient care recipients are in Benson, Deerwood, Ely and Mora.
- Red River Valley Dental Access Project received $35,000 from Delta Dental to Minnesota to provide urgent care evening hours one night a week for people in need. Volunteer dentists provide the care.
About Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation
Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation supports Delta Dental of Minnesota’s mission of improving the health, through oral health, of the people in Minnesota. The Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation supports initiatives that promote access to oral health for the underserved, especially in rural areas and for people living with low incomes across the state.