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Henry Schein Dental UK continues its support for M.E.R.G.E.D.


  Posted by: Dental Design      8th October 2018

For the second consecutive year, Henry Schein Dental UK and the International College of Dentists’ (ICD) Global Visionary Fund (GVF) support M.E.R.G.E.D. (Michigan-Ethiopia Research, Growth, & Education in Dentistry) initiative to help strengthen Addis Ababa University (AAU) College of Dental Sciences’ didactic curriculum, patient care, and formulate an efficient and effective oral health education programme. Through the ICD GVF, Henry Schein donated health care products for the oral hygiene instruction programme, in which M.E.R.G.E.D. participated and for the distribution in underserved communities and schools.

The M.E.R.G.E.D. initiative has been designed to be a long-term effort to improve the AAU College of Dental Sciences’ didactic curriculum, clinical care abilities, and research programmes. The continuing goals of this activity include basic science curriculum development, improved access to dental specialty training, and creation of a research database for Addis Ababa University to systematically document their research efforts. In addition, this initiative aims to create a sustainable collaboration with University of Michigan School of Dentistry/Medicine to allow the AAU College of Dental Sciences to better serve their nation.

In autumn 2018, a M.E.R.G.E.D. team travelled to Ethiopia for the second time to continue their research on local oral health data, e.g. about childhood caries rates, with the support of AAU. The primary goal is to formulate an efficient and effective in-school oral health education and hygiene instruction programme that will be repeated yearly by local teachers and that makes a difference for future generations through preventative oral care.

The aim of this long-term project is to lay the groundwork for domestic dental research, to strengthen the AAU ability to produce competent dental professionals and to start an oral health awareness programme as over 100 million Ethiopians are currently served by fewer than 600 dentists.  Dr. David Brzezinski, DM, DDS, from the University of Michigan Medical School, Department of Anatomical Science said:” The AAU’s aim is to educate students to become competent dental professionals to have a significant positive effect on the country’s population.” Dr. Brzezinski leads the M.E.R.G.E.D. initiative and is supported by Dr. Diane Chang, DDS, Member of the Hospital Dentistry Department at the University of Michigan and by Kareem Rabaa, student at University of Michigan School of Dentistry.

Henry Schein’s product donation is an initiative of Henry Schein Cares, the company’s global corporate social responsibility programme. Health care activities supported by Henry Schein Cares focus on three main areas: advancing wellness, building capacity in the delivery of health care services, and assisting in emergency preparedness and relief. The support for M.E.R.G.E.D is part of Henry Schein Cares’ long-term partnership with the ICD (International College of Dentists) Global Visionary Fund (GVF).

“Henry Schein Cares aim is to enhance access to care for those in need and to help to build capacity in the delivery of health care services. With complementary missions, this programmes aligns nicely with the M.E.R.G.E.D. activity to improve the education of dental students in Ethiopia and to implement oral health programmes. Therefore, we are proud to be able to support this great initiative through the ICD GVF,” said Simon Gambold, Henry Schein’s Vice President Marketing, EMEA Dental Group.


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