Zion-Benton Times - Community News - Your Life

Zion Benton Children's Service Dental Clinic Open New Office


October 5, 2018

Zion Benton Children's Service Dental Clinic Open New Office

By Elroy Reed

Zion Benton Children's Service Dental Clinic (ZBCS) held their ribbon cutting and grand opening on Thursday, September 27, 2018 at their new Zion location at 1245 27th Street.

ZBCS is a non-profit organization that provides school-aged children from low-income families in the Zion and Benton townships and surrounding communities with quality dental care. ZBCS is the only dental clinic in the local area that accepts children with Medicaid or those who have no dental insurance.

ZBCS has been in existence for over 65 years. It began through the efforts of a local school nurse, Olive Lind, who saw the dental needs of children from families who could not afford to pay. A dental clinic was set up at one of the elementary schools in Zion. From that base, students were seen throughout the year. In 2005, when it was obvious the needs had outgrown the space, ZBCS moved to a rented office space at the Zion-Benton Township Pearce Campus.

According to the Chicago Dental Society, Lake County experienced a 27% decrease in the number of safety­ net dental clinics between 2006 and 2011. Currently, ZBCS is the only provider accepting Medicaid in the Zion­ Benton community and one of only three safety­ net dental providers in northern Lake County.

"So, you can imagine how our patient base quickly grew to serving over 1,100 patients every year," says Fran Brenden, a volunteer and Board Member of the clinic. "We serve children every day by providing routine preventative dental care, such as exams, x­-rays, cleanings, fluoride treatments, space maintainers, and sealants. We also provide treatment for dental decay with fillings, pulpotomies, and extractions."

A full-time office manager runs the clinic and staff includes dentists, hygienists and dental assistants. Fran says that they engage in fundraising and grant writing to support their annual budget of about $180,000.

Due to construction at the Pearce Campus, ZBCS had to move. A real estate owner in Zion donated an 1,800 square foot building which is now their new home.

"Our clinic is located just off of Sheridan Road in downtown Zion. Being on the PACE bus route, it is easily accessible to families in the surrounding communities. With this new opportunity for ZBCS, we hope to be serving children for many more years to come," says Fran.


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