UB mobile dental unit targets underserved communities

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW)  — Dozens gathered at University at Buffalo’s South Campus on Wednesday morning to celebrate the addition of a mobile dental van (S-Miles To Go).

UB’s School of Dental Medicine held a ribbon cutting ceremony to welcome the second dental unit to its fleet.

The 40-foot-long unit has everything you would typically see at your dentist office.

WKBW/Kristen Mirand

The 40-foot-long mobile unit will target underserved communities in Genesee, Livingston, Orleans, Wyoming and Erie counties.

From dental chairs to state-of-the-art equipment and a waiting room, the mobile unit has it all.

Equipment inside the unit includes:

  • two dental chairs
  • a state-of-the-art panoramic X-ray unit
  • digital radiography
  • a sterilization center
  • wheelchair lift
  • electronic health record system
UB mobile dentist unit

WKBW/Kristen Mirand

The mobile unit is the second van in the UB School of Dental Medicine’s fleet.

Paula Fischer, director of school based health programs and rural dentistry project, said the goal with the unit is to reach more underserved communities in Western New York including older adults, people with disabilities and people who are homeless.

This will allow them to reach thousands of people in the Western New York communities that do not have the transportation needed to access these services.

Between dental students getting experiences with patients and reaching people in need, Fischer said this dental van is a win-win for everyone.

“The need is so great in the patients that we see, so we want to give everybody something to be proud about, their smile, and improve their self-confidence,” Fischer said.

Fischer said the mobile van and equipment costs more than $700,000 which was supported by donations and grants.

UB mobile dentist unit

WKBW/Kristen Mirand

Fischer said the need for the mobile dental unit is great, especially in rural areas.

The first mobile unit the school launched targets Chautauqua. Allegany and Cattaraugus counties.

The second unit launched on Wednesday, will reach people in Genesee, Livingston, Orleans, Wyoming and Erie counties. The unit will be on the road serving this area by the end of the month.

To learn more about requesting service, you can find information here or call (716) 449-1674.


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