OKLAHOMA CITY and TULSA – The University of Oklahoma College of Dentistry has announced plans to add a dental clinic to the OU Health Physicians Schusterman Center Clinic building, located on the OU-Tulsa campus. Construction of the 5,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art dental clinic will begin this fall.
The OU College of Dentistry clinic in Tulsa will provide comprehensive oral health care services to patients of all ages. It is expected to open in June 2022.
The new clinic will provide clinical care to the area of the OU-Tulsa campus and is the first of several OU College of Dentistry clinical extensions anticipated throughout the state.
“The resources of the OU-Tulsa campus, in conjunction with a premier clinical environment, make the campus an ideal location for this clinical extension,” said OU President Joseph Harroz, Jr. “Once completed, this project will allow patients to obtain dental care, along with other physician-provided health care services ranging from internal medicine to women’s health, to specialties like pediatric cardiology at one convenient location.”
Oklahoma ranks 49th in the nation for access to affordable dental care – a statistic that served as the genesis to the college’s expansion. Over the last five years, the OU College of Dentistry has provided dental and emergency care to more than 285,000 patients. Nearly one-quarter of those patients travel from the northeastern part of the state to receive care at the college, located on the OU Health Sciences Center campus in Oklahoma City. The OU College of Dentistry also fulfills a substantial portion of the oral health care needs of indigent care patients, many of whom live in counties in northeastern Oklahoma and do not have access to dental care within a 30-mile radius.
“The Tulsa expansion helps our college fulfill one of its primary roles in improving the health of the community and surrounding area by bringing dental services, at substantially reduced fees, into an area of our state with under-served oral health needs,” explained Raymond Cohlmia, D.D.S., dean of the OU College of Dentistry, who in November will join the American Dental Association as its executive director.
“Access to quality, affordable oral care makes a phenomenal difference in promoting overall health and well-being,” said John H. Schumann, M.D., president of OU-Tulsa. “I’m genuinely excited for what the expansion of dental services means to the Tulsa community. This initiative is another demonstration of our commitment to missions that serve to improve quality of life for the citizens and residents of the Tulsa area.”