Mission of Mercy provides free dental care to stateline residents

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) – This weekend is your chance to get access to free dental work provided by thousands of volunteer dentists from around Illinois.

Mission of Mercy is offering free dental care to over a thousand residents a day from 6 a.m. on Friday, July 22 and Saturday, July 23 at the UW Health Sports Factory.

Volunteers at the event say this idea came about because many people who need dental work couldn’t afford it.

“A lot of people do not have dental insurance or dental coverage and even with coverage, dental care can be expensive,” said Dr. Perry Tuneberg, a volunteer and local dentist.

The goal is to provide an estimated $1 million dollars in free dental care.

Patients are seen on a first come, first serve basis. emphasis has been placed on fillings, extractions and cleanings, with the most critical dental problems receiving primary treatment. Patients are seen on a first come, first served, basis.

“Some of us can’t afford to go to dental and things like this so it was a pleasure to have them come out and do what they did for us,” said Kimberly Martin, a visitor to the event.

Alderman Chad Tuneberg secured free parking for visitors to the Sports Factory this weekend so you won’t even have to worry about the cost of parking.

Volunteers say they can only do so much with the donated money, and call on the Illinois legislature to adequately fund the Medicaid program.

“Part of this is just to highlight what the need is for access to dental care, and try to encourage our legislators to understand the need. To help us help patients,” Stacey Van Scoyoc, the President of the Illinois State Dental Society, told 23 News.

The event will close when the clinic reaches maximum capacity.

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