Dental care is something many take for granted, but some not everyone can afford the luxury -- including those who protect and serve our country. However, there is a new effort to help fix that.
It's a modest dental clinic located on a downtown street in Tracy, California, but what they've proposed is groundbreaking.
Air Force veteran and Congressman Jeff Denham are part of a group driven to set up a clinic providing free dental care to veterans who can't afford it.
Thanks to fundraisers and community support the clinic has top of the line equipment, the latest in technology, and the clinic can see 32 patients a day.
Dr. Vikram Brar has treated many veterans out of his office in Modesto. He has offered up his satellite office here and will be volunteering his services as an endodontist.
"It's always a good feeling to give back to the community," Brar said. "It's a different kind of satisfaction money can't buy."
The clinic expects veterans will come from across the region. Dentists involved say a good smile and healthy teeth improves a person's mental and physical health -- which they said is something those who served deserve.
"In the whole country we couldn't believe there was not an organization outside the VA that would provide dental care to veterans," said Jaimie Aguinaldo, executive director of the Dentist Organize For Veterans project.
Organizers hope to get the clinic up and running by November. Their target date is Veterans Day.
"I think we have to give back and we can't think of a better group to give it to them the people who support us and defend our country," Aguinaldo said.
The clinic will also be training and using veterans for jobs inside the offices.
Project organizers said they would welcome any sponsors or volunteers.
Segment Sponsored By: Mercy Health System