Dental Team to Vietnam, June ’08.

On June 20, 2008 HTC Arizona sent a 6-member dental team to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Two dentists from Phoenix, Dr. Thuy Ngo and Dr. Tuyet Ngo and Dr. Anthony Burrows from Tucson were accompanied by Mark and Kristin Mathews and by HTC’s administrator Johanna Ricketts for this first time dental mission. Along with each team member came several bins of collected dental supplies.

The team started the mission at the Go Vap Orphanage where they received a warm welcome from the staff, as well as from the children. The majority of these children were hydrocephalus patients who had never been seen by a dentist. Over the next two days the team provided general dental screenings as well as follow-up treatment, doing mostly cavity fillings, tooth extractions and routine dental cleanings. 

Although the team was prepared to work also at a second orphanage, there seem to have been a communication problem. Apparently the orphanage wasn’t prepared for the mission. But thanks to the help of Dr. Truong Van Linh, a local dentist in Ho Chi Minh City, he arranged that the team could work at another location. So for two days Dr. Linh and the team worked together at a Vocational Center called Maison Chance.

At both locations the team enjoyed getting to know some wonderful loving and caring people. And even though they were not able to work at the 2nd orphanage, they still managed to provide dental screenings to 204 patients and follow-up treatment to 171 of those. Seeing all those beautiful smiles made the trip well worth its efforts and the use of all the supplies that were brought along.

Sincere thanks go to the team members (as named above) and to those who provided all the dental supplies: Russell Roberge, DDS from Foothills Dental Studio, Thuy Ngo, DDS from TN Dentistry and Mr. Steve Lappin from Burkhart Dental.

 

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