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Staff Forum pancakes raise 'dough' for low income patient fund

2010 Staff Forum President Liz LesterOn Nov. 12, TAMHSC-Baylor College of Dentistry Staff Forum members chipped in their time, talent and pancake mixes to raise some ‘dough’ for the Social Services Dental Care Fund at the college. The pancakes were scrumptious, and fun was had by all. And in addition, the soiree raised $461.27 for the fund.

Starting bright and early at 7:30 a.m. as promised, 2010 Staff Forum President Liz Lester, Director of Social Services Leanna Bartlett and the volunteer brigade donned aprons and swung spatulas as students, staff, faculty and administrators lined up to watch the pancake flipping begin!

Social Services fund Director Leanna BartlettBartlett directs the Social Services Dental Care Fund and says this was its first in-house fundraiser. It was established in 1982 by Dr. R. Paul Fultz, former chair of the community health and preventive dentistry department (now the department of public health sciences).

The fund provides financial assistance to patients in need, while affording them an opportunity to assume as much financial responsibility as possible in arranging for their dental care, thereby protecting the dignity of the individual.

Undoubtedly, the greatest need many patients have is for financial assistance, even in light of the dental school's reduced fees. And most of them, in addition, do not qualify for any known benefits.

To be eligible, a patient must have already paid a minimum of $300 toward their dental treatment. In addition, the patient must complete an application form, and the director of social services conducts an interview with the applicant and the dental student or resident to whom the individual is assigned. Based upon information obtained, assistance from the dental care fund is then determined by a committee.

Suzi and RichardPast funding sources have included individual contributions and occasional grants from charitable foundations. Between 2001 and 2004, the Baylor College of Dentistry Women's Club made annual donations, and in 2009, the University of Texas at Dallas Predental Association held the first annual "Miles for Smiles" runathon, raising $1,500 benefiting the Social Services Dental Care Fund. This year's event raised more than $2,000.

Lester, while scooping the last little bit of dough from a mixing bowl, said that she hopes the Staff Forum pancake breakfast will become an annual college event. In addition, Lester said that the Staff Forum would join with two student groups (SNDA and Psi-Omega) in supporting their food drive for the East Dallas Food Bank by donating the "leftover fixins'" (5 packages of pancake mix and 15 bottles of syrup).

If you missed the pancakes, you can still savor the "flavor" of the event by watching:

The Staff Forum Pancake Breakfast slideshow video.