Built in 1998, The Baptist Mobile Dental Ministry was created in 2015 to help provide dental service and Christian witness to those in need. Mobile Dental Unit, driven to and from every location by Licensed Transportation Coordinators, is funded by the Florida Baptist Convention and the Southern Baptist Convention's North American Mission Board. The bus was purchased by funding from Maguire State Mission Offering. Each year the bus offers 40 weeks of care. Thousands of underprivileged patients at or below the 150 percent poverty level have received much-needed free dental care. The Mobile Unit is a continuation of a mobile ministry that served low-income Floridians since 1973.
The bus contains two treatment rooms that each have x-ray equipment and supplies for basic dentistry. The Mobile Dental Unit doesn't just provide basic dentistry, but it also offers ministering, personal evangelism, health screenings and health fairs. Dentists a part of the Mobile Dental Unit usually work three to four hour shifts either in the morning and afternoon. Dentists who volunteer can receive continuing education credits for their volunteer work. Each dentists has a dental assistant that assists with procedures, and the bus also has mobile dental coordinators to help with sterilization and locations of medical instruments. Dentists perform tooth extractions and fillings within the unit, but further work can be volunteered by local dentists in their offices. Local churches and associations work to sponsor free dental services in their areas. A church or Florida Baptist Association may reserve the dental unit for its community and is responsible for finding patients, volunteer staff, dental ministries and locations.
To receive further information about getting Mobile Dental Unit to come to your area or if you are a dentist or dental assistant looking to volunteer your time, please call 1 (800) 226-8584, ext. 3113 or visit www.flbaptist.org. Florida Baptist Convention is located at 1230 Hendricks Ave. in Jacksonville, Fl., 32207.