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School dental clinics 2

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Thursday 28 December 1950, The Sydney Morning Herald

Letters

CHILDREN’S TEETH IN COUNTRY

“Deplorable Picture”

Writes Dentist

Sir, – Your correspondent “Dentist,” of Armidale, refers to my recent dental trip for the Far West Children’s Health Scheme, to some small country schools.

A deplorable picture of the children’s dental health was presented, and this appeared to be due to a sub-standard diet.

In some towns, fresh fruit was unobtainable and vegetables were limited, green vegetables particularly so. Powdered milk was used instead of fresh milk and this is rather unpalatable, especially in the hot weather we encountered.

This lack could possibly be remedied for the children by school vegetable gardens and two or three hand-fed and watered cows would supply all the necessary fresh milk. If vegetables and fruit could not be grown then fruit at least should be made available to the school children at, say, cost price, arranged by the Education Department.

In a number of towns no dentist from the Education Department has visited the schools since before the war.

It may be claimed that the services of dentists for travelling clinics are difficult to obtain, as possibly the remuneration offered by the Education Department for such a position would compare unfavourably with that received by even labourers and shearers in some of the towns we visited.

However, I understand that a number of dental students complete their university courses on financially-assisted schemes which place them under an obligation to work for two years at Government direction. I know of a few such assisted graduates, none of whom have been called upon to give their services.

Surely these graduates could be used on itineraries planned by the department, and suitable accommodation booked for them.

PETER B. E. BAILEY, Sydney.

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Written by macalba

June 30, 2010 at 8:05 pm

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