East Carolina University will build a dental clinic in Brunswick County to serve area residents and to provide students with hands-on training, the university announced Friday.
The 7,700 square foot facility will be located near Novant Hospital in Bolivia. It is expected to open July 2015.
Fourth-year students at the ECU School of Dental Medicine will take part in clinical rotations at the center. The facility will also provide dentistry residents a place to hone their skills.
The center will provide dental care to Medicaid patients and others who lack regular dental care.
The Brunswick County center will be the eighth in underserved areas across the state. Centers are already serving patients in Ahoskie, Elizabeth City and Lillington. Facilities are under construction in Sylva, Spruce Pine, Davidson County and Robeson County.
ECU admitted its first class of 52 dental students in 2011 and a second cohort in 2012. A third class of 52 started in August. All students are North Carolina residents, according to a press release.
Goals of the school are to improve access to dental care, to educate students from underserved and underrepresented populations, and to graduate dentists who have a desire to practice in underserved areas.
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