LAPORTE | Operation Stand Down offers qualifying veterans a free dental screening from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 10 at the Indiana University Health LaPorte Dental Center, 400 Teegarden St.
The screening is offered to LaPorte County veterans who do not have a dentist or do not have dental insurance. The free screening includes an exam and X-ray. No treatments will be performed on-site the day of the screening. However, if follow-up treatment is needed, veterans will be referred to a dentist in LaPorte County, who will do a cleaning, fillings and extractions at no extra cost.
This community service is sponsored by the IU Health LaPorte Dental Center, the LaPorte Hospital Foundation and La Porte County dentists.
Daniel W. Fridh, DDS, a LaPorte dentist of Comprehensive Dental Care, and Chairman of the IU Health La Porte Dental Center Advisory Board, suggested the pilot program after the idea came to him through his work with the Indiana Dental Association. “Other states have provided state-wide dental screenings for veterans in a centrally located area where some veterans may have to travel a long distance for the screening. Our situation is unique in that we are providing the screening in our county, by county dentists, to veterans who live in our area,” Fridh said. His proposal for the screening was presented to the IU Health LaPorte Dental Center Advisory Board earlier this year, which unanimously supported the establishment of the screening.
Fridh, along with Drs. Greg Benson, Robert Grace, David Porter and Ben Porter, will be volunteering their time and services at the screening Nov. 10. “There are some veterans who return from services and don’t have a job or the money to take care of dental care on their own,” said the former United States Air Force captain. “They are falling through the cracks and it’s our responsibility to take care of the men and women who have served our country.”
Discharge papers (DD214) and a driver’s license will be required at the screening. To schedule an appointment, call the IU Health LaPorte Dental Center at (219) 326-1943.