Posted: Tuesday, July 9, 2013 4:45 am
Richard Craver/Winston-Salem Journal
Construction is expected to begin soon on an 8,000-square-foot dental learning center at Davidson County Community College.
The goal is opening the center, operated by East Carolina University, by mid-2014. The university unveiled its plans for the $3 million Lexington center in June 2012.
The Davidson center is one of 10 community service learning centers being established by ECU’s School of Dental Medicine, but the only one announced to date near an urban setting. The centers are part of a financing focus on dental care by the General Assembly.
The centers will provide training for fourth-year dental students and dental residents. The students and residents will offer general, preventive and emergency care to Medicare recipients and low-income residents. The DCCC center’s staff will include 1½ full-time dental faculty positions, a business manager, five to six dental assistants, two to three dental hygienists and two general dentistry residents. Four to five students will be at the center for nine-week rotations.
The center will be open to patients with insurance because it will have to be self-sustaining, even with university support, said Dr. Michael Scholtz, director of community practices for the dental school. The center is expected to cover most of the 12-county Piedmont Triad Partnership area.
DCCC was chosen, in part, because it was willing to donate land on its campus and because of the county’s lack of dentists, ECU dental school officials said.