Wood River Health partners with PACE-RI to provide dental services to local elders

WOOD RIVER HEALTH has partnered with PACE Organization of Rhode Island to provide diagnostic and preventative dental health services at PACE-RI’s Westerly adult day center and health clinic. Registered dental hygienist Jennifer Lavoie takes dental X-rays of a PACE-RI participant. / COURTESY WOOD RIVER HEALTH

WESTERLY – Wood River Health recently announced it has partnered with PACE Organization of Rhode Island to provide diagnostic and preventative dental health services at PACE-RI’s Westerly adult day center and health clinic.

PACE-RI is a health plan for adults 55 years and older who qualify for nursing home level of care but want to remain safe at home. PACE-RI ensures patients receive a variety of medical, behavioral and social services focusing on prevention and extending health.

Under the new partnership, Wood River will provide dental services at PACE-RI’s location in Westerly on the first Friday of every month.

“Wood River Health works diligently to increase Washington County’s access to dental care,” said Wood River CEO and President Alison L. Croke. “One way we have removed barriers to access is by partnering with PACE-RI to provide dental hygiene services at its Westerly Adult Day Center.”

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Wood River is a Federally Qualified Health Center with board-certified dentists and dental hygienists who provide services to patients of all ages, with a focus on preventative and restorative dentistry.

“PACE-RI was founded to help local elders live safely at home, stay out of the hospital and nursing home, and reduce strain for their caregivers,” said PACE-RI CEO Joan Kwiatkowski. “Like Wood River Health, we understand the benefits of ensuring our community members have access to preventative, holistic care. Together, we are connecting seniors with the high-quality dental health services they need to thrive.”

The American Dental Association reports that two-thirds of Americans over the age of 65 have some form of oral health concern, including tooth decay and gum disease. As people age, their teeth require more maintenance and care because of complications and those who skip their regular dental checkups have a higher risk of developing oral health issues.

“Washington County’s senior population is experiencing a steady, increased demand for high-quality dental care,” said Wood River Health Chief Dental Officer Dr. Tiffanie Waldeck. “To meet this need, we have partnered with PACE-RI to provide diagnostic and preventative oral hygiene services to their participants.”

Jennifer Lavoie, who has worked at Wood River since 2006, provides preventative oral health treatment to PACE participants monthly. Lavoie earned her registered dental hygienist degree in 1997 and public health dental hygienist degree in 2020, both from the Community College of Rhode Island.

Katie Castellani is a PBN staff writer. You may contact her at Castellani@PBN.com.

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