By Ignacio "Iggy" RubalcavaJanuary 31, 2014
Baumholder's Dental Clinic held its second annual open house Jan. 29 to help spotlight the clinic's many services and opportunities for Soldiers and Family members.
It's called an open house but it's more of a dental expo where community members are introduced to dental topics like an initiative called Go First Class, dental insurance and dental services for Soldiers and Family members.
Present during the various information sessions were commanders, Family Readiness Group leaders, Soldiers and Family members.
"We're really pleased that Baumholder is reaching out so well to the Baumholder community. We see that happening all across our footprint," said Col. Craig Patterson, Landstuhl Dental Activity commander. Petterson came to Smith Barracks to see first-hand what the Baumholder Dental Clinic offers to its patients.
A focus of the clinic is the introduction of their Go First Class initiative. "It's a dynamic change in the business practice. The mass exams of reintegration, of deployment, which meant that you march in and wait all day, those days are over," said Patterson. "We aren't in that business model anymore. We've evolved into a much better practice and an increase in time savings for the unit and for the Soldiers themselves," said Patterson. With this new patient treatment philosophy, "The Soldiers can spend their time back at the unit where they need to be," he said.
Patterson already sees this Go First Class initiative making a tremendous difference in the treatment of dental decease.
"Right now, Europe is leaps and bounds ahead in many ways. We're sitting with 65 percent wellness which means that 65 percent of our Soldiers don't have any dental care or dental treatment needs at this time," explained Patterson. In years past these percentages were unconceivable.
"And that's our focus, to make sure we're treating disease, not treating statistics, not just getting you in and telling you 'Oh yeah you got your medical exam done.' We're going to make sure you're cared for and that your treatment needs are met so you can deploy and not worry about those issues at all," said Patterson.