April 30, 2020

Our daily routines have been interrupted as we all work to practice social distancing, and many businesses that we would regularly frequent are currently closed. These changes have also impacted the health care system. Per state and CDC guidelines, dental services may only be provided for emergencies during the pandemic. This order has led many dental practices to temporarily close their doors, or provide limited hours.

What do you do if you have a toothache during the pandemic, and there isn’t a dentist open in your home town right now?

Here is one patient’s story, as told by Jessica, Dental Support Supervisor at CHAS Denny Murphy Clinic, located in downtown Spokane:

“We had a dental patient come in all the way from Ritzville because their one dentist who travels from Ellensburg was not seeing patients. He was in a lot of pain: unable to sleep, unable to control the pain with over-the-counter drugs, unable to eat. He was pretty hesitant to have treatment done by someone else, but was in so much pain he said if he did not get this tooth out of his head, he was going to take some pliers to it and get it out himself!

To make matters worse, his appointment was scheduled for the following week, not that day. Because we knew he traveled all the way from Ritzville, our dental team was able to pull together and make it work, despite a full schedule.

The patient was so grateful by the end of the visit, he thanked all of the staff present, saying Dr. Orth was the best dentist ever and he just might continue to travel for all his dental care because he liked her so much!”

CHAS Health clinicians are honored to be able to serve everyone in need during this challenging time.  If you need emergency dental services, please call us at 509-444-8200.

This blog post is part of a special CHAS Health Foundation series for #GivingTuesdayNow. #GivingTuesdayNow is a global day of giving and unity that will take place on May 5, 2020 as an emergency response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19.  #GivingTuesdayNow emphasizes opportunities to give back to communities and causes in safe ways that allow for social connection and kindness even while practicing physical distancing. #GivingTuesdayNow is a global day of giving that focuses on the collective power that individuals, communities and organizations use to celebrate generosity and philanthropy worldwide.

This mission of the CHAS Health Foundation is to create health equity by strategically investing in patients, partners, and communities. The CHAS Health Foundation supports CHAS Health, a non-profit community health center serving over 97,000 patients annually regardless of their insurance status or ability to pay. You can donate to the CHAS Health Foundation at: https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/CHAS