Dental Care for the Children of Haiti

Categories: News

A Unique Relationship

In the September/October 2011 edition of AAOMS Today, the official publication of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, an article was released describing Dr. Scott Bulloch and his experiences with the people of Haiti, the children in particular.

 

As many of us are aware, the amazing people of Haiti have experienced and ultimately overcome many difficult trials and hardships. For the children, one of those consistent hardships has been the lack of good dental care.

Throughout his life, Dr. Bulloch has been fortunate enough to have unique opportunities to get to know the people of Haiti on a deeper level. He and his wife actually adopted two girls from an orphanage in Foyer de Sion in 2003 and two more in 2011. During their visit to Haiti to unite with those first two girls, Dr. Bulloch and his wife were both shocked by the condition of the orphanage due to malnutrition and the lack of basic necessities. 40 children were crammed into a 630 square-foot space with more coming in all of the time.

Sionfonds for Haiti

Annie Blackstone, a woman from San Francisco who had also adopted two children from the Foyer de Sion orphanage, came up with an amazing solution to help these children in dire need. Her organization, Sionfonds for Haiti, has built schools to not only educate the children but to provide them with one meal a day. Dr. Bulloch wanted to get involved as soon as possible.

Since his first experience in Haiti and his connection with Blackstone, Dr. Bulloch has returned to Haiti twice a year to provide the children in those schools with much needed dental care. He usually spends about a week to 10 days there with a pediatrician or two, a few other dentists, and a couple of members from his own team back in St. George, Utah.

Recounting his first experience examining the children, Dr. Bulloch said that “I had to extract the permanent molars on 12-year-olds. On one kid, I extracted all eight. They were bombed-out teeth.” He also handed the kids brushes and gave lessons on how to use them. None of these children had ever seen a toothbrush before.

A Lasting Impression

Dr. Bulloch has seen a major improvement in the dental hygiene of the children in Haiti throughout his 9 years of annual visits. His involvement with Haiti does not stop there. He has actually helped build a Haitian enclave in St. George as well.

Dr. Bulloch and his growing family will forever have a love for Haiti and its good people.