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Illegal dentists’ equipment put to good use at Abbotsford dental clinic

Dr. Chris Barlow, a local dentist who volunteers at a free dental clinic, looks at seized instruments that an illegal dentist had sterilized in a toaster oven. The equipment will be properly cleaned and used to help those with little or no dental coverage. - Alex Butler
Dr. Chris Barlow, a local dentist who volunteers at a free dental clinic, looks at seized instruments that an illegal dentist had sterilized in a toaster oven. The equipment will be properly cleaned and used to help those with little or no dental coverage.
— image credit: Alex Butler

Dental equipment and materials seized from illegal dentists will be put to good use at the Abbotsford Food Bank Free Dental Clinic.

The clinic was the recipient of a donation from the College of Dental Surgeons of BC (CDSBC) on Monday, receiving items that had been seized from three illegal dentists operating in the province.

The confiscated equipment and materials will be cleaned and/or sterilized before being used for patient care, while items that are not appropriate for patient use are being destroyed.

Dr. Chris Barlow, an Abbotsford dentist who volunteers at the clinic, said donations are vital to providing dental services to those in need.

The Abbotsford Free Dental Clinic helps residents with low income and little or no dental coverage. It is serviced by local dentists, certified dental assistants, and hygienists who volunteer their time and services.

CDSBC is donating dental chairs, suction and surgical equipment, high- and low-speed dental drills, endodontic (root canal) material, impression material and trays, and restorative material to various clinics.

Barlow said dental health is extremely important to a person’s overall well-being, health and self-esteem.

Clinic administrator Lala Khankishi-Zade explained that helping people with dental problems can improve their confidence, allowing them to go out and seek jobs and decrease their dependence on the food bank.

She said everything in the clinic is donated, and it is always in need of donations. Cheques can be made out to the Abbotsford Food Bank, with a note to designate the funds to the dental clinic. The food bank is located at 33914 Essendene Ave. Donations can also be made online at www.abbotsfordfoodbank.com.

CDSBC took action against three illegal dentists last year. To check the registration status of your dentist by checking the online Directory of Dentists at www.cdsbc.org.

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