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The Special Care Clinic at the Tel Aviv University Maurice and Gabriela Goldschleger School of Dental Medicine will soon serve some 314,000 Israeli children and teens living with physical or mental disabilities. Multiple diagnoses and medications often make this population more susceptible to oral diseases than other children. The inability to fight infections or to perform basic oral hygiene too often and too quickly turn small dental problems into big ones. Then access becomes the issue. Unfortunately, access to oral healthcare for people with special needs of any age has reached critical proportions in Israel, where only 8% of dentists have any specialty at all. When complete, the Rothstein-Williamowsky Special Care Clinic will be the only dental clinic in Israel dedicated to treating this unique population. Residents in Pediatric Dentistry will learn the skills necessary to care for youngsters with the full range of physical and emotional challenges –autism, epilepsy and other physical and emotional challenges that have limited their access to oral health care. Graduate students will learn the special skills needed to care for them, including general anesthesia skills that are often required. They’ll get the expertise they need to treat children from early childhood through adolescence with the compassion and dignity they deserve. MORE

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