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Dental Health For All Award

St. Luke’s Receives “Dental Health For All™” Award

Monies will be used to expand mobile dental services in Quakertown area

Bethlehem, PA (3/18/2011) - St. Luke’s Hospital & Health Network is pleased to announce that its mobile dental program has received $20,000 in project funding from Tom’s of Maine in recognition of St. Luke’s dedication to oral health care in the community.

St. Luke’s newest mobile dental van,
HealthStar III, joins a fleet of two medical
vans and two dental vans providing
on-the-go care to children in local school
districts.

Selected from nearly 70 entries, St. Luke’s was one of 10 finalists in the Tom’s of Maine “Dental Health for All” program. An online public vote determined the final recipients of the grants.

“This award allows us to continue our efforts to provide much needed oral care to low-income children who have either never seen a dentist or who have not received dental care for many years,” states St. Luke’s Director of Community Health, Bonnie Coyle, MD. In 2010, St. Luke’s Dental Health Initiative program provided “on-the-go” care to 1,100 children at 31 different sites via its two HealthStar dental vans which are RV’s equipped with dental chairs, instruments and staff.

While the program, now in its twelfth year, has primarily served children in the Bethlehem and Allentown area, St. Luke’s is focused on expanding services to the Quakertown area. According to Coyle, a large percentage of children in Quakertown are uninsured and therefore have no access to dental care.

“Oral health continues to be identified as one of the biggest community health problems in our local area,” states Coyle. “By providing education, preventive and restorative care services to at-risk children we can promote the importance of good oral health practices throughout their lives.”

“We’re proud to shine a light on the important efforts of mobile dental clinics like St. Luke’s and the quality services they bring to those who might otherwise go without, including children,” said Susan Dewhirst, goodness programs manager at Tom’s of Maine. “We look forward to seeing the new smiles these mobile clinics and others around the country will bring to their communities over the coming months.”

St. Luke’s Dental Health Initiative is a program of the Bethlehem Partnership for a Healthy Community, a collaborative effort designed to improve the quality of life and health of residents in Bethlehem and surrounding areas. Dental care for children and adults is also available at St. Luke’s dental centers in Bethlehem and Easton. For more information, call 610-954-2106 or visit www.slhn.org.

To date, Tom’s of Maine Dental Health for All program has helped make nearly 200,000 additional patient visits possible with $900,000 in funding provided to more than 25 school and community-based dental clinics.

Tom's of Maine is a leading natural products company focused on oral and personal care. TOMs sells high-quality toothpaste, mouthwash, dental floss, deodorant, bar soap, and body wash products. The company has a long-standing commitment to supporting people, communities and the living planet. For 40 years, Tom's of Maine has sponsored hundreds of non-profit efforts by giving 10% of its profits back to the community and encouraging employees to use 5% (12 days) of employee time to volunteer. Tom's of Maine employees regularly contribute suggestions for improving the company’s high sustainability standards. And their ideas, from wind power to ways to improve recycled and recyclable packaging options, are critical to the company's sensitive way of doing business. Tom's of Maine enjoys partnering with its consumers, vendors and community organizations to support lasting, positive change that is good for people and the planet. Visit us online at http://www.tomsofmaine.com/ or at http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/TomsofMaine