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Janet Sevier Gilbreath Award 2008

E. C. Tyree Health & Dental Clinic
Saint Mark United Methodist Church

2008 Winner
Janet Sevier Gilbreath Special Project Recognition Award

Many churches support improved access to health care through donations or volunteer work. Saint Mark United Methodist Church of Wichita is more direct. It built its own health clinic onsite -- the E.C. Tyree Health Clinic. After hearing about a growing unmet need for dental care among the poor and uninsured, the church was, again, responsive and direct. In February of 2008, with the assistance of a $57,400 Health Fund grant, the E.C. Tyree Health Clinic successfully expanded to include a new two-operatory dental clinic. The addition includes an attractive reception area and children's playroom as well as a dental lab. The Health Fund grant provided substantial support for equipping the new facility and continues through April of 2010 with some operating support while the clinic becomes established.

Presentation of 2008 Janet Sevier Gilbreath award
Schaunta James-Boyd, director of the E.C. Tyree Health & Dental Clinic, receives the 2008 Janet Sevier Gilbreath award from Health Fund Board Chair Lance Carrithers.

Full-time dental hygiene services are available Monday through Friday. A dentist is available on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings. The clinic currently provides preventative hygiene services, emergency care, extractions, and fillings. In the last six months of 2008, the clinic provided care for 439 patients. Outreach services extend to children's programs, senior citizen services, summer camps, and several local schools. A partnership with an area elementary school provides oral health education, screenings, and fluoride varnish at the school. Outreach efforts provided oral health education and screenings to more than 600 children in the first year.

Now that the clinic is open, the need for access to dental care is even more apparent. Half of the clinic's patients live on less than $10,000 a year. The vast majority lack health insurance of any kind.

The Clinic has established a dental advisory committee and is gaining the commitment of ten local dentists to provide combined services equivalent to a full-time dentist. Expanded services such as root canals, crowns, and dentures are expected to be added in 2009. The clinic will also become a rotation site for a local dental assistant program.

Because of the achievement of successfully establishing a dental clinic to serve those in need, the level of volunteer and financial support involved, and the demonstration of good management and financial practices to assure quality service delivery and sustainability, the E.C. Tyree Health & Dental Clinic has been selected from among more than 150 active grants in 2008 for this award. The Board of the United Methodist Health Ministry Fund commends this grant project for its recognition of the importance of oral health and its contribution to the building of the Christian health community in Kansas.

Representing the E.C. Tyree Health & Dental Clinic at the award ceremony: Schaunta James-Boyd, Executive Director; Stefanie Harper, Rosalie Gaulier-Nguyen, and Amada Fye, Clinic Staff; Lucynda Raben DDS, Michael Williams DDS, Gilbert Omido DDS, Dennis Jones DDS, and Junetta Everett, Dental Advisory Committee Members; Margo Watkins, Olu Osunami, and Rhonda Bables, Board of Directors; Nancy Finney, Volunteer; Garney Hill, Financial Officer; and Rev. Junius Dotson, Pastor, Saint Mark United Methodist Church

Awarded May 13, 2009

Learn more about the Janet Sevier Gilbreath award