Thousands line up for free dental care

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People began lining up outside this year’s Mission of Mercy clinic at 3am Friday morning. The CT Dental Association sponsors the clinics annually to provide free dental care to CT residents in need. This year’s clinic ran Friday and Saturday in Middletown but could only care for 1,000 patients each day. Almost 1,700 people, clinicians and non-clinicians, volunteered at the clinic. Over the last three years, clinic organizers have seen demand for their services increase, but because of improvements in HUSKY dental care, the number of children needing care is down. In 2004, 35% of US adults had no dental coverage; people who are poor or low-income are more than twice as likely to be uninsured than those with high incomes. Average dental expenses per American rose 68% from 1996 to 2006.
Ellen Andrews