DentalVolunteers.com - Nepal
In 1987, my friends Woody and Penny Strong had already been to Nepal several times and were able to help me make the necessary contacts and arrangements for our clinics. But I was the only dentist, with a single assistant, and could only do examinations and extractions. I was disheartened that, too often, the extractions were of permanent teeth that could have been filled.
The next year, another dentist joined me and I was able to borrow a portable dental unit from the Christian Dental Society. Now we were able to do fillings and save teeth that otherwise would have become painful or require extraction. But the unit was in three pieces - the unit, air tank and compressor – and the arrangement was cumbersome.
Through donations from patients and friends, I was able to purchase two portable dental units that were self-contained in a small metal box. Now, two dentists could really produce a significant amount of dentistry. This worked so well that I purchased another unit. Then, another dentist and a couple of lay people (my patients) wanted to go along. So we became eight: three dentists and five helpers. And, we continued to grow. We traveled to Nepal on nine separate occasions and the largest group totaled 18.