Though the setting was a far cry from their clinics and practices, the goal was the same: save the teeth. In March, Drs. Daniella S. Peinado, Victoria J. Ball and Ryan B. McMahan visited the fishing village of Treasure Beach, Jamaica, on an access to care trip funded by the Foundation for Endodontics. The Foundation recently announced a new mission, vision and core values that, among other things, broadens the organization's reach to include endodontic care for underserved patients. With this expansion, the Foundation will be able to support more efforts to help patients retain their natural teeth.
While the Foundation remains committed to fostering excellence in endodontic research and education, broadening its scope will allow the organization to:
- Address the changing needs of the specialty and the priorities of a new generation of endodontists.
- Offer meaningful opportunities for endodontists to support and represent their specialty.
- Increase the visibility of endodontics and endodontists.
- Promote the benefits of saving teeth to new communities of patients and general dentists.
"As the specialty of endodontics becomes more mainstream and international, access to care efforts provide new opportunities for the Foundation to apply our resources to benefit endodontics and patients," said Dr. Peter A. Morgan, president of the Foundation for Endodontics. "Funding outreach projects will enhance care for patients in need and demonstrate the value of endodontic treatment by endodontists in a way the public can easily understand."
To complement its growth and ambitious plans for the future, the Foundation also introduced a new logo and brand identity. The new brand emphasizes the Foundation's role as the leading investor in endodontics. The Foundation's financial support is critical to advancing the specialty and ensuring that endodontists remain the specialists in saving teeth.
The Foundation's exploration of its mission, vision and values began last year when the Board of Trustees initiated a strategic planning process. As part of the process, Foundation trustees and staff surveyed AAE members and visited endodontic residency programs across the country. The Foundation also formed REACH, the Resident Expert Advisory Council, consisting of 10 endodontic residents who serve as advisors to the Foundation. It was through REACH discussions that the idea for the recent access to care trip was born.
That idea came to fruition in March as Drs. Ball and McMahan, both REACH members, and Dr. Peinado, a Foundation trustee, traveled to Jamaica to volunteer with the Helping Hands Dental Clinic. Equipment and supplies were graciously donated by Patterson Dental, Brasseler USA, Edge Endo and Obtura Spartan Endodontics. Over four days, the endodontists worked alongside dental students from Marquette University to diagnose and treat nearly 500 patients. They also performed 39 root canal treatments, and in the process educated the participating dental students about endodontists' expertise in saving compromised teeth.
|Dr. Victoria J. Ball treats a patient on the Foundation for Endodontics-sponsored access to care trip to Jamaica.||Drs. Daniella S. Peinado (center) and Ryan B. McMahan (far right) greet children at the Helping Hands Dental Clinic.|
"This was the first time in the 20-year history of the clinic that an endodontic team provided care," said Dr. Peinado. "We started out the week explaining what a root canal procedure entails, but by the end of the week, patients were in line asking to see 'the doctors who save teeth.'"
Dr. Peinado added, "I definitely think the dental students were able to appreciate endodontics after seeing how we work and what is involved in a root canal procedure. We heard several times that they were amazed to see our work and how meticulous we are!"
Photos from the access to care trip are available to view on the Foundation for Endodontics Facebook page.
The Foundation Board will be investigating future access to care trips and other opportunities for endodontists to reach new audiences. To support the Foundation's endeavors, visit the Foundation website to make a pledge or increase your existing pledge.
|Earlier this year, the Foundation introduced a new mission, vision and core values: