Press release from Blue Ridge Health:
Mission Health, an operating division of HCA Healthcare based in Asheville, NC, is pleased to announce the transition of Mission Children’s Dental to Blue Ridge Health (BRH) effective April 1, 2021. This transition includes a donation from Mission Health of two dental buses for the continuation of the Toothbus® program which offers education, prevention and complete dental care to patients who may experience issues accessing quality and affordable dental care, as well as all useful dental equipment and an annual cash donation for three years to support the program.
“We are excited to welcome the Mission Children’s Dental clinic and Toothbus® program into the BRH Family,” said Dr. Richard Hudspeth, Chief Executive Officer of BRH. “In addition to expanding access to high-quality, affordable dental care to patients in and around the Asheville area, the additional mobile dental treatment options will allow us to further our reach by offering our services to individuals who may otherwise not have access to routine dental checkups and necessary restorative treatments.”
Over 4.1 million Carolinians, including many children, live in a designated dental professional shortage area. Pediatric dental clinics and mobile dental programs like the Toothbus® provide care to children and adults who might not otherwise have access to oral health professionals. Programs like these also help eliminate other barriers, such as transportation issues and time away from school and work for appointments.
School-aged children, in particular, are affected by poor oral health and tooth decay is the most common chronic disease among children. Oral health problems and pain affect performance at school and are the top reason for school absences in communities that lack access to dental health resources. Research finds that dental pain has a similar, if not greater impact on a child’s quality of life than acute asthma. Poor oral health in children is associated with increased shyness, feelings of worthlessness, unhappiness and reduced friendliness.
“Mission Children’s Dental has provided thousands of children in Western North Carolina with high-quality dental services over the past twenty-five years, and we look forward to seeing Blue Ridge Health both continue and expand those services through the clinic location and the Toothbus® program,” said Nancy Lindell, Director of Public and Media Relations at Mission Health. “We are excited about the transition and the expansion of dental services to patients across the Western North Carolina area.”
Like other BRH dental clinics, patients at this location and those who utilize the Toothbus® program will receive full-spectrum dental care services including preventative services (such as regular cleanings and x-rays) and restorative treatments (including fillings). BRH accepts most insurance plans, including Medicaid and Medicare. Patients without insurance and those with high deductibles pay on a sliding scale based on family size and household income, and no one is ever turned away for an inability to pay.
Patients with questions or those needing access to services should call 828-692-4289 for scheduling and additional information.