CVTC’s Give Vets a Smile Program is a program that offers free dental hygiene and assistance and other health management services.

Chippewa Valley Technical College (CVTC) and Marquette University’s School of Dentistry have partnered to take dental hygiene a notch higher. They are offering affordable dental hygiene education and awareness to families with low-income in the Chippewa Valley area. However, the clinic is serving a totally different purpose for today. CVTC is offering dental care services for the veterans.

Veterans who could be in need of dental care as well as upkeep were invited to receive free dental hygiene, education and any other related assistance on Saturday, Nov. 4 between 8:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. The event scheduled to take place at the clinic at the CVTC Health Education Center, 615 W. Clairemont Ave., Eau Claire.

This clinic is part of the Give Vets a Smile program offered by the college every year, now for a third time. Veterans enrolled in VA Health Care with military ID but have no dental benefits qualifies for these free services, which included hygiene treatments, like screening blood pressure, oral assessments, dental cleaning, patient education, dental exams, x-rays and fluoride treatments, and dental services including fillings and limited root-canal therapies and denture services also included.

The CVTC’s respiratory therapy program students will be present at the event offering free diabetes screenings and also checking lung as well as respiratory functions. Pam Entorf, the CVTC dental hygienist and assistant program director said that For Nov. 4, 80 appointments were scheduled. However, appointments are still available today for for all veterans looking forward to dental care or related requirement. Everyone is invited but Walk-in help is not available. 

The people in charge of this work are local professionals, alumni, the faculty, CVTC and Marquette students taking dentistry programs, as well as community volunteers assisting in the day-long clinic, all efforts with a simple goal of offering thanks.

Entorf said:

“Part of it is they’ve given up part of their life to serve for us, and this is a way to say thank you for their service. 

Entorf also said that the veterans who come in for the service will also be helping the students by giving them the opportunity to add to their 100 hours of community service which is a requirement for them to graduate.

Any veteran who need more advanced care, they can individually work with the dental care providers at the event or clinic by making arrangements for further consultation, for instance working with the same dental professional in a class or within the clinic during its regular operation.

Entorf reiterated:

“We do our very best to get… pretty much most basic needs and pressing needs, we look for other options for the patient.”

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