Tennessee AGD Helps Tennesseans’ Access to Care Issue

  • by Tennessee AGD
  • Oct 21, 2019
On July 27, 2019, the Tennessee AGD board passed a motion to help both Meharry Medical College School of Dentistry (MMC) in Nashville and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center College of Dentistry (UT) in Memphis with their expanded functions dental assistant (EFDA) programs. Tennessee AGD is pledging $100,000 over ten years to the combined EFDA programs, proportionally. 

These programs have hundreds of people on waitlists. Tennessee AGD’s action will help reduce the educational bottleneck and promote overall access to dental care.

Project managers K. Michael Garrett, DDS, MAGD, and Leon Stanislav, DDS, FAGD, visited both schools and spoke with their deans to formulate the best financial paths to help.  

Garrett pointed out that both schools have different needs. The MMC program is relaunching under Assistant Dean Julie Gray, DDS, MA, and needs immediate seed money. The UT program has greatly expanded its availability to 210 spots annually under Dean James C. Ragain Jr., DDS, MS, PhD. 

Other members of their task force were Ron Bell, DDS, MAGD, former Tennessee Board of Dentistry chair; Kathy Hall, DDS, MAGD; and former AGD President E. Mac Edington, DDS, MAGD, ABGD (1997–1998). 

Tennessee AGD President Anthony Carroccia, DDS, MAGD, ABGD, praised the hard work of Garrett and Stanislav and their team. He concluded that the EFDA credential is critical to increasing patient access to care with a general or pediatric dentist by providing up to 40% more dentistry by handling the placement of direct restorations.

TN AGD group pic