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Make Dental Care Affordable for the Working Poor

Ontario: Health Minister George Smitherman is tongue tied when questioned about improving dental care to make it affordable// for the working poor in Ontario.

A letter has been written to the minister by a Chief Dentist in Toronto, with a proposal to consider dental treatment for low-income workers in community health centers; The Minister has not given an answer to this proposal yet. Instead, the Minister has passed the letter to Community and Social Services Minister Madeleine Meilleur, despite her ministry not being involved with financial matters of community health centers.

The letter from the Chief Dentists’ office was inspired after the story of Jason Jobes, a 25 year old man, who could not save all his teeth due to poverty and the absence of public dental insurance. The Chief Dentist, Dr. Stewart, has been actively championing the cause of dental treatment for the poor for many years.

During a recent interview, Stewart explained, that with an expenditure of $2 million a year, dental clinics could be made operable in prevalent community health centers. This way the working poor could be benefited.

The public awaits the response of the Health Minister, just as the issue gets tossed back and forth between various ministries.

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