DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) – In Dothan, there are only 60 general dentists for nearly 500,000 people in a 50 mile radius, according to the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s School of Dentistry.
Construction will soon begin on a UAB Dental Clinic to address the state’s dental crisis.
This will be a first-of-it’s-kind model to recruit, train, and retain rural dentists.
It’s set to be located inside the Health Center South Medical Tower on Ross Clark Circle.
The clinic will have eight exam chairs and more than 10,000 patient visits will be conducted annually.
UAB School of Dentistry faculty and staff will operate the clinic.
One goal of the move to the southeast is to improve the dental health of those living here.
UAB officials could not be more thrilled for what they say is their first venture outside of their big box.
“We’re excited to be part of a solution for the state of Alabama. We have a big issue in the state for rural dentistry and we hope that this is the start of something wonderful,” Russell Taichman, Dean of UAB’s School of Dentistry said.
There will be two sets of students coming to Dothan.
Those will be senior UAB Dental students on a rotation and, after graduation, dental residents will be on rotation as well.
Construction is set to begin by the end of this week.
The project is on track to be completed by next summer.
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