Media Release - 30/08/11
The Canterbury Health System is helping children living in the eastern suburbs smile with improved access to better dental care.
The Aranui Community Dental Clinic has opened its doors and begun service to children in the eastern suburbs of Christchurch and is holding a community open day tomorrow (Wednesday, August 31, 2011).
This is a four-chair clinic providing assessment and treatment to children and complements mobile dental clinics making routine visits to schools in the area.
Dr Martin Lee, Clinical Director of the Community Dental Service, says five-year-olds living in the Aranui-area are 40 percent more likely to have decay or fillings than children living in other parts of Canterbury. They are also 50 percent more likely to have had a tooth extracted.
“This is an exciting opportunity to make a real difference to the oral health of children in an area of Christchurch where dental care is desperately needed,” Dr Lee says.
“We will be able to achieve this through up-to-date dental equipment and modern facilities making dental care a less daunting experience than in the past.”
The clinic’s community open day is from 9am to 3.30pm tomorrow. All are welcome to visit the clinic, located at 240 Breezes Road, Aranui, to see it in action.
This clinic is part of a nationwide upgrade of oral health services for New Zealand communities and part of a $13 million upgrade to the Community Dental Service for school children within the Canterbury region. The upgrade will all of the region’s 120 school dental clinics replaced by 12 community dental clinics and 18 mobile dental units.
Canterbury’s first community dental clinic was opened in May 2009 at Ashburton Hospital. Since then, clinics have also opened at Akaroa, Burnside, Kaiapoi, Hillmorton, Hornby, Northcote, Rangiora, and Woolston. The clinic at Lincoln is nearly complete, and the last clinic will be built as part of the planned integrated family health centre at Kaikoura.