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July 26, 2011 > Tri-City Health Center and Kidango Announce New Partnership

Tri-City Health Center and Kidango Announce New Partnership

Through grant funding provided by Every Child Counts/First 5 Alameda County's Community Grants Initiative, Tri-City Health Center (TCHC) will implement their "Bright Smiles" dental program at 12 Kidango Child Development Centers in Fremont, Newark and Union City.

TCHC's Bright Smiles is a dental health promotion and preventive services program that aims to reduce the burden of dental disease through efficient integration of health promotion, preventive services, and access to disease management and treatment services to underserved children ages 0-5 years and their parents/caregivers in Southern Alameda County. Through this new collaboration, TCHC will provide dental health promotion and preventive services to over 900 low-income children ages 0-5 years from families that are most likely to experience dental disparities. Additionally, TCHC will provide access to dental services through referral/enrollment into Medi-Cal/dental insurance and follow-up care through their dental office for Kidango families.

The Bright Smiles program emphasizes prevention, early identification and treatment of dental disease in children before they enter kindergarten. Through the Bright Smiles program, Kidango preschool age children will learn how to properly care for their teeth and the importance of properly caring for their teeth. Kidango children may also participate in a "low-tech" non-invasive dental screening by a licensed dentist to assess the state of the child's oral health and to help the child overcome any fears that may have previously prevented the child from having a pleasant experience at a dental appointment. Their parents/caregivers will attend workshops to gain understanding of the need to maintain good oral health, both for them and for their children, as well as the best ways to prevent dental decay and cavities.

"Kidango is excited to partner with TCHC to provide families with children enrolled in our centers with additional resources to help them lead healthy lives. Without this service, many of our families would not have access to quality dental services and educational opportunities to promote their children's oral health", said Paul Miller, Kidango's Executive Director. "Our Bright Smiles program bridges the gap in knowledge of good oral health practices by focusing not just on children, but their families who have a great influence on the health behaviors of the child. TCHC and our community appreciate Kidango's partnership and support," said Juliana Schirmer, Development Director, TCHC.

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