Janelle Saffin at Ballina Dental Clinic with the clinic’s senior dental therapist Denise Harrison, oral health program director for North Coast Area Health Service, Greg Davies, and seven-year-old Soleil Ashford in the dentist’s chair.
Janelle Saffin at Ballina Dental Clinic with the clinic’s senior dental therapist Denise Harrison, oral health program director for North Coast Area Health Service, Greg Davies, and seven-year-old Soleil Ashford in the dentist’s chair.

Funding for new dental clinic

Ballina Hospital’s Dental Clinic will be the recipient of $722,000 in federal funding for a new training clinic.

The project is one of 22 rural education infrastructure projects being announced by the Rudd Government to boost rural training opportunities for health, dental and allied health students said Page MP Janelle Saffin when she the announcement on Tuesday.

It will be jointly run by the University of Sydney Dental School, NSW Health Centre for Oral Health Strategy and the North Coast Area Health Service.

Ms Saffin said as well as training more people in our area, the centre would allow people on a waiting list for public dental services access to treatment.

“Since the Howard Government axed the Commonwealth dental health program in 1997 there’s been a huge gap in our public dental health services, with some 650,000 people across Australia on public dental waiting lists...These new facilities will provide an increase in clinical services to help treat some of those people who are in desperate need,” she said.

“The Rudd Government introduced legislation for a Commonwealth Dental Health Program to provide $290 million to fund public dental visits, including about $2 million for dental visits in our region, but the bill remains blocked in the Senate by the National and Liberal Party Senators.”


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