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Nonprofit dental care is expanding

Two recent grant awards has the Lake Superior Community Health Center in Carlton expanding from four to six dental operatories in 2022 — increasing appointment capacity from 4,400 to 6,600 per year.

As a nonprofit community health center, LSCHC provides care to those in need, regardless of insurance or ability to pay. LSCHC opened a dental office in Carlton in August 2020 due to the well-documented shortage of dental services, particularly for low-income residents. The practice rapidly reached capacity.

The Delta Dental Foundation provided a $100,000 grant to help fund equipment to outfit the expansion. Then, when the American Rescue Plan was passed and included funds to expand Health Center infrastructure nationwide, LSCHC was able to get approval to use additional funding to subsidize the expansion.

The expansion will mark a 50-percent increase in the organization’s capacity. The rehabilitation project will also modernize the structure in downtown Carlton, increase energy efficiency, and provide potential future opportunities for expanded access to LSCHC’s universally accessible medical, behavioral health and chiropractic services currently available in Duluth and Superior.

LSCHC accepts all insurances — including Medicaid and Medicare. Those without insurance are welcome as well. A sliding fee scale is available for everyone without access to coverage, and no one is turned away because of inability to pay.

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