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Pharmacy Choice - Pharmaceutical News - Lawmaker hopes for state funding for new dental clinic [The Frederick News-Post, Md.] - March 21, 2019

Pharmacy News Article

 12/26/15 - Lawmaker hopes for state funding for new dental clinic [The Frederick News-Post, Md.]

Dec. 26A state-funding request proposed by Del. Karen Lewis Young, D-District 3A, for the next legislative session would help a new dental clinic in Frederick.

The bill, which comes after consultation with Frederick Memorial Hospital, seeks about $100,000 for a new dental clinic to be established near the hospital. The hospital has proposed a collaboration with the University of Maryland Dental School to open a clinic at property belonging to Frederick Memorial.

Patients who let dental health needs go untreated may develop serious health conditions, infections and heart ailments, and end up at the hospital emergency department, according to a community health assessment from the hospital.

The health assessment the hospital conducted in 2013 stated that the number of patients admitted to the hospital to treat unrelated illness, injury or surgical care and who require dental care is a concern.

The hospital has reported hundreds of outpatient visits and 15 to 30 inpatient visits related to dental care in the past several years.

"They have to give them painkillers and send them away," Lewis Young said.

"These patients have allowed dental or oral issues to go untreated for months and sometimes years such that the FMH staff are compelled to intervene and advocate for treatment of their patient's dental/oral issues," the assessment reported.

Lewis Young is a member of the Rotary Club of Frederick County, which has been supporting a program that finds volunteer dentists to work on people who cannot afford regular dental care.

"That model was a great short-term solution, but we never believed it would be a long-term solution," she said.

The House Appropriations Committee will take up Lewis Young's bond bill because it would be a capital expense. The legislative session starts Jan. 13.

Lewis Young sits on the House Health and Government Operations Committee, where the majority of her legislative proposals will be considered.

"I decided to try to concentrate legislation that would come before that committee," she said. "You tend to develop expertise on a committee."

She figures she can better represent her legislation that way and stay better informed about the legislation that her committee considers. A committee recommendation influences overall votes by the legislature, since lawmakers are asked to consider thousands of bills, she said.

Having to present legislation before other committees may require missing one's own committee's deliberations.

"If people are relying on my recommendation, I ought to be there," Lewis Young said.


(c)2015 The Frederick News-Post (Frederick, Md.)

Visit The Frederick News-Post (Frederick, Md.) at

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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