Riedel Foundation Grant Allows Improved Dental Care for Low Income Residents

The Riedel Foundation closed out its 2023 grant year with a $19,000 award that will allow the Hannibal Free Clinic to expand its dental services to people in need.

The Hannibal Free Clinic provides free primary healthcare services to patients in the region who are uninsured and living in poverty. The Riedel grant will allow the clinic to buy equipment needed to partner with A.T. Still University – Missouri School of Dentistry and Oral Health (ATSU) in Kirksville, MO to have supervised dental students provide dental care to patients at the HFC. The long-term goal is to become a clinical rotation site for ATSU that will be able to provide more than only extractions, but also restorations, cleanings, fillings and other services.

“Becoming a full clinical site will help to decrease emergency room visits related to tooth infections and pain, avoid extractions of teeth that could have been saved, and prevent complications to their other health conditions,” said Clinic Manager Sharon Webster. “In the future, we hope to open up these services to people who do not qualify to be HFC patients, such as those who have medical coverage but not dental insurance. Too often those people go without any dental care at all.”

Riedel Foundation Lead Trustee Dr. Michael Bukstein presented the $19,000 check to Webster.

“The Hannibal Free Clinic is such an asset to our community,” Bukstein said. “All their services are provided by volunteer physicians, nurses and support staff with no cost to the patient. Without the clinic, many low-income residents would go without primary medical care. This is a great partnership for the Riedel Foundation.”

Every year since 2011, the Free Clinic has consistently provided over $2,000,000 in gifts and services without charge to eligible adults age 18 – 65. The clinic is located at 160 Progress Road in Hannibal.