Logan’s newest residents will receive a warm welcome and a free dental check up at the Refugee Dental Fair this Sunday 24 March 2019, coinciding with World Oral Health Day.
Held in partnership with the Tzu Chi Foundation and local community organisations, this is the fifteenth Dental Fair providing free dental treatment and oral health education to hundreds of refugees in the local area.
Metro South Health Senior Director of Oral Health, Dr Helen Boocock, said the dental fairs have been extremely successful in helping newly arrived refugees access much-needed dental treatment.
“We have a wonderfully diverse community in Logan and a large refugee population. The annual dental fair helps to reduce the confusion, fear and barriers for patients accessing oral health care and helps to develop and strengthen a culturally sensitive workforce who celebrate inclusivity and diversity,” Dr Boocock said.
“Over the years, it has grown to become an extraordinary community event with translation and support services provided by various local settlement agencies.
“Our volunteer medical teams include dentists, nutritionists, dieticians and nurses, are assisted by dental students from the University of Queensland and Griffith University to provide the very best care for attendees. There are also many volunteers of a non-clinical background, who ensure that the day runs smoothly.”
The fair is also an opportunity for refugees and asylum seekers to learn about the Australian health system, which can be complex and difficult to navigate.
“The challenges are multiplied for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds,” Dr Boocock said.
“Many refugees come from countries where there is limited access to healthcare, so providing a check-up and on-the-spot treatment means we can address any current dental problems they may have and help them enjoy a healthier and pain-free future.”
The Refugee Dental Fair is an initiative of the Queensland Government’s $10m Logan Community Health Action Plan (Logan CHAP) which aims to improve the health of people in the region.
“This amazing event is only possible through the coordinated efforts and hard work of our Oral Health team, the Tzu Chi Foundation and our many partners,” Dr Boocock said.
“We are expecting about 140 refugee and asylum seeker patients to attend the Refugee Dental Fair. We look forward to welcoming them on the day.”
The event is coordinated in partnership with Metro South Oral Health, the Tzu Chi Foundation, Metro South Refugee Health Services, Refugee Health Network Queensland, Access Community Services Ltd, Brisbane South PHN, Mater Refugee Health, Australian Red Cross and Multicultural Development Association.
*Please note this is an invitation-only event and only for refugees.
To check eligibility for free oral health care or to make an appointment, call 1300 300 850 or visit www.metrosouth.health.qld.gov.au/oral-health.