Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Taking the Time to Remove Barriers to Dental Care

OAKLAND -- The Mickey Mouse Club blares on the TV in the waiting room of La Clinica de La Raza’s dental clinic at Oakland’s Children’s Hospital. As a mother and grandmother speak Spanish and English to the three children in their care, their eldest sits by the door, jerking her arms up and down, talking to herself occasionally.
That child is called in to see Dr. Ed Rothman with her mother at her side. He calms her fears by explaining what he’s doing as he examines her recently cleaned teeth for cavities. Two years ago, he had to put her under general anesthetic in a hospital operating room to fill in her cavities.
Children’s Hospital opened the dental clinic nearly thirty years ago to address the oral health of hospital patients who had special behavioral or medical needs, such as hemophilia, cancer or heart problems.
Rothman spent his residency working with special needs children at the Kennedy Institute at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and the University of Maryland; and he likes serving special needs kids. “It’s more thinking than just filling and drilling and cleaning and looking at x-rays,” Rothman said. He’s been at the clinic for almost two decades.

No comments:

Post a Comment