Army Dental Corps Celebrates 100th Anniversary

Thursday March 3, 2011

What is it?

On March 3, 2011, the Army Dental Corps celebrates its Centennial Anniversary...100 years of tradition and service to our Army. The theme for this year's Centennial- "Army Dentistry...100 Years Strong!"- reinforces the Army's emphasis of strength to our nation, and the need to maintain the organization's strength, individually and collectively.

What has the Army done?

The U.S. Army Dental Corps (DC) of commissioned officers was established on March 3, 1911, with the passing of H.R. 31237, Amendment 49 and President Taft's signing it into Public Law No. 453, 36 Stat. 1054, following many years of National Dental Association discourse, congressional hearings, and other failed attempts for recognition. This act had a major impact on the civilian status of dentistry as a profession; before the enactment of the military dental corps authorization, the words "dentistry," "dental profession," and "dental surgeon" had no significance or recognition under the law. The United States government set precedent for the "official recognition" of dentistry as a profession. Subsequently, Army DC Corps officers have served alongside our Nation's Warriors in garrison and in every major conflict and humanitarian assistance operation, providing dental services and advocating for the oral health of Soldiers.

What has the Army planned for the future?

Nothing could be more exciting than the groundbreaking research now being conducted by the dental officers in the Institute of Surgical Research at Fort Sam Houston, Texas: chewing gum that will fight the bacteria that cause dental plaque and cavities, a flowable bone regenerative material that will form a matrix for replacing hard tissue lost in the jawbones, and a futuristic facial mask that will facilitate regeneration of bone, skin and neurovascular components of the face.

Planned synergy among corporate initiatives- like First Term Dental Readiness (FTDR) for readiness care for Initial Entry Soldiers; Reserve Component Dental Demobilization Reset (RC-DDR) for exam/readiness care for demobilizing RC Soldiers; and, the Army Selected Reserve Dental Readiness Systems (ASDRS) for annual exam/readiness care for RC outside of alert- aimed to bolster dental readiness, especially in the RC, will continue to steer dental readiness to statistically unprecedented levels. Maturation of the Dental Command's (DENCOM's) Corporate Dental Application (CDA), a web-based, electronic dental recording/reporting/scheduling software suite, coupled with the transformation to all-digital radiography, postures the Army Dental Corps to serve as a catalyst for the Military Health System in future transition to a complete Electronic Health Record.

Why is this important to the Army?

The Army Dental Corps has, and has always been, the Soldier's trusted agent for oral health: maintaining individual and unit-level dental readiness and advocating for dental wellness initiatives; monitoring access to care, in the military direct care setting and the outsourced private sector; and, remedying dental disease to prevent dental casualties during deployment, are among the most important services provided by the Corps. In support of the Army Surgeon General's Culture of Trust, Soldiers and their families continue to rely on the Army Dental Corps to provide state of the art dental care that meets and exceeds our patient's expectations for quality, compassion, and excellence.


U.S. Army Dental Corps

Related Surgeon General's blog: Centennial Anniversary of the Army Dental Corps





Websites of interest:

Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay

Women in the US Army







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2010-2013: 60th Anniversary of the Korean War

2011: 150th Anniversary of the Civil War


*Women's History Month - ref: Women in the US Army

Brain Injury Awareness Month - ref: Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center*

March 3- Centennial Anniversary of the Army Dental Corps


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