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Come One, Come All | East Knoxville church to offer free dental service

An East Knoxville church is offering free dental care.
Published: Jul. 21, 2021 at 7:00 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - According to the Tennessee Department of Health, half of East Tennessee counties are without health departments offering free dental care. Experts also found the lack of dental care leads to life-long diseases and death.

Every week, Director Dorothy Davison at the East Knoxville Free Medical Clinic told WVLT News patients come in requesting dental work.

“We have people with rotting teeth, toothaches, jaws swollen. We can put them on antibiotic after antibiotic, but who’s going to pull the tooth?” Davison said.

As of July, the clinic only offered general care and medication inside Magnolia Avenue United Methodist. With Lincoln Memorial University’s help, they’ll soon start offering weekly dental work.

“LMU is developing a dental program and they approached us. The dean came and said we’re willing to provide faculty and students to give free dental care in East Knoxville,” Davison said. “That’s wonderful news. That’s something that’s badly needed in Knoxville, so we have to renovate this room and provide a waiting area, but we’re thrilled.”

Despite its inhabitable sanctuary, the church’s clinic is opened every Monday from noon until 6 p.m.

Pastor Tim Jackson recently took on the title this month and said the clinic’s expansion is a part of a larger mission. As the building is restored back to standard city code, he plans to bring in a multi-cultural congregation and create a single-family outreach program.

“No matter what people are struggling with, there is hope. There is hope,” Tim Jackson said.

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