Dental check-ups for students

THE Royal Flying Doctor Service is visiting schools and pre-schools across the district, providing free dental check-ups for students.

A Kerang South Primary School student receives a preliminary dental examination from dental student Cherry Chen.

A Kerang South Primary School student receives a preliminary dental examination from dental student Cherry Chen.

This is the fourth year running that the service has been provided. 

"We provide limited examinations to help encourage children to go and get a full check-up from nearby private or public clinics or from our clinic," RFDS Victoria Health Services manager Kate Storr said.

"We go in and provide a checkup and send a letter home to parents if follow-up care is needed." 

The RFDS program saw 390 children for school check-ups in the Shire of Gannawarra last year, in Kerang, Koondrook, Cohuna, Leitchville, Murrabit and Lake Charm, and the number is expected to be higher in 2019 due to a high rate of parental consent.

Around the State there is an average 50 per cent consent rate for the in-school program, and about half the children examined require treatment, Ms Storr said.

This can range from teeth cleaning and fissure sealants to fillings, extractions and X-rays. 

Children who have been found to need care through the school program can receive it through the RFDS mobile clinic or local public or private dentists. 

The RFDS mobile clinic is now in the district offering free services to children and young people, Aboriginal residents, pensioners, asylum seekers and health care card holders.

In addition to check-up and treatment at the clinic, Ms Storr said children under 17 may be eligible for $1000 worth of dental treatment over two years under the Child Dental Benefit Schedule. Local dentists can provide advice. 

The nearest public dental services are in Swan Hill, Echuca and Boort, she said.

The Royal Flying Doctor Service dental program, which operates in more than 40 communities across Victoria, is run in partnership with Dental Health Services Victoria and the Australian Dental Association Victoria.

The clinic will be run in Kerang, Cohuna and Koondrook until May.

For more information call 8412 0444.

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