a step- To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Paso del Norte Health Foundation and its ongoing work to improve health in the region, the Foundation’s Board of Directors announced an $11 million grant to Woody L. Hunt College of Dentistry in Los Angeles. Texas Tech University in El Paso.
The Health Foundation’s $11 million commitment consists of two parts: a $6 million commitment in 2016 to support the dental school start-up phase to develop an innovative curriculum, recruit world-class faculty, as well as how to recruit first-class students and help tap into state funding. . A second commitment of $5 million was made this year to support the College of Dentistry’s operations and enable it to become a leader in oral health care in the region.
“This leadership commitment will support the College of Dentistry and provide significant health and economic benefits to our region,” said Lisa Sainz, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Paso del Norte Health Foundation. “This is an important addition to the healthcare landscape and we are proud to be a part of its founding and success.”
“We believe the Health Foundation’s commitment to the new dental school will increase awareness and importance of oral health, train and educate future dentists to address the shortage of providers in our area, support community dental clinics, provide college appointments for local dentists, and contribute to the region’s overall economic growth, As Tracy J. says: Yellen, CEO of the foundation.
In recognition of the important support, the building that houses the Texas Tech Dental Oral Health Clinic has been named the Paso del Norte Foundation. Later this year, a statue designed by local artist Julio Sánchez de Alba will be installed in front of the clinic building in honor of the charity.
“We are incredibly grateful to the Paso del Norte Health Foundation for supporting us in this endeavor,” said TTUHSC El Paso President Dr. Richard Lang. “Our shared mission to improve the health and quality of life for residents of this binational region led to the establishment of the first dental school in Texas more than 50 years ago, changing the face of healthcare in West Texas.”
Poor dental health contributes to many medical conditions including diabetes, cancer, heart and lung disease, strokes, and adverse pregnancy outcomes. Oral diseases particularly affect the most vulnerable, including children and the elderly.
The dental clinic will provide students with the opportunity to work alongside Hunt School faculty and provide affordable dental services to underserved residents. Only half of adults in El Paso visit a dentist each year. In El Paso County, there is only one dentist per 4,840 residents, compared to the national average of one dentist per 1,638.
The first generation of 40 dental students began their studies in July, and subsequent classes will include 60 students.
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