Thousands of Children in Brooklyn Have Not Seen a Dentist in More Than a Year

Nearly a year into the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, school-based dental clinics across New York remain closed based on state guidance to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. This has left many low-income families unsure of where to turn for their children’s preventive and corrective dental care.
For thousands of local children, who are at a sensitive time in their dental development, it now has been a year or longer since their last dental appointment. If these children’s dental conditions are left untreated, there could be a lasting impact on their health.

“Students are already learning in a strained environment, and ongoing dental issues could be making it worse for low-income students to keep up with their peers,” says Sarah Murphy, executive director of the New York School-Based Health Alliance. “Until the school-based dental clinics are able to safely re-open, it’s important for community health centers, like the Family Health Center at NYU Langone, to find alternative ways to provide dental treatment and help prevent a cascade of negative outcomes.”


Deborah “DJ” Haffeman
FEBRUARY 23, 2021