Dental Clinic Opens Serving Wisconsin Residents with Disabilities

Milwaukee WI August 26, 2016
Contact: Sharon Selz
(414) 977-5064;

Dental Clinic Opens Serving Wisconsin Residents with Disabilities

A new dental clinic designed and built to meet the special needs of people with disabilities will open on Monday, August 29, at St. Ann Center for Intergenerational Care-Bucyrus Campus, 2450 W. North Avenue.

The Gardetto Family Community Dental Clinic will specifically serve children and adults with physical or cognitive disabilities that prevent them from being treated in standard private practice or community clinics. Patients must be Wisconsin residents and will need a referral from a dentist or medical doctor. All forms of Medicaid will be accepted.

“The mother of one of our patients has been taking her daughter to Minnesota to see a dentist.” said Laura Cherek, director of dental services at St. Ann Center. “There are very few clinics in Wisconsin that can provide the one-on-one attention people with disabilities need,” she added.  “We hope to create a dental home where staff can maintain consistent care for patients from early childhood through their elderly years,”

Russell Dunkel DDS, the Center’s dental director, and Lakisha Arif-Holmes DDS offer exams, teeth cleaning, fluoride treatments, sealants, all forms of X-rays, restorative work including fillings and crowns, extractions, and root canals and dentures as needed. The three-chair clinic’s operatory is large enough to accommodate patients using wheelchairs and scooters.

According to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, 2010 Burden of Oral Disease in the State of Wisconsin, individuals with disabilities have “significantly higher rates of poor oral hygiene and need for periodontal disease treatment than the general public.” Research also links poor oral health with increased risks for systemic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and aspiration associated with chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD).

The dental clinic adds to St. Ann Center’s commitment to providing comprehensive health care to the community. Donors for construction of the dental clinic include the Gardetto family, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, Delta Dental and the Ziemann Foundation.

You can learn more about the Gardetto Family Community Clinic online.

1 reply
  1. Jackie
    Jackie says:

    I take my disabled daughter here for her dental needs. I have high regard for Zenobia Davis. She is the dental hygienist & she loves her job & patients.
    The receptionist (Raquel) on the other hand is not a caring person. Whenever I call to schedule an appointment she is rude & not willing to be helpful. It would be in the clinic’s best interest to find someone more qualified to deal with the public.


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