COVID-19 Relief


COVID-19 Dental Equipment Fund 

To help safety-net dental organizations in Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana purchase make it easier for more people to safely access dental care, the Delta Dental Foundation created the COVID-19 Dental Equipment Fund. The $400,000 fund will help safety-net dental clinics purchase additional personal protective equipment, retrofit their practices with equipment to control aerosols and update sterilization equipment.

Funding was awarded to federally qualified health centers, community health departments, school-based dental centers, volunteer clinics, and other safety-net dental clinics based on need and the populations they serve.

Each grant recipient must complete and submit a grant reporting form by February 28, 2022.

The full list of grantees includes:


Cassopolis Family Clinic Network

Cherry Health

Covenant Community Care, Inc.

Dental Clinics North

Ingham County Health Department

InterCare Community Health Network

Mel Trotter Ministries

Mott Children's Health Center

Northwest Michigan Health Services 

Honor Community Health

Smiles on Wheels

The Wellness Plan

Thunder Bay Community Health Services, Inc. 


Care Alliance

Cincinnati Health Department

Community Action Committee of Pike County, Inc. 

Dental Center of Northwest Ohio

Family Health Care of Northwest Ohio

HealthSource of Ohio

Hopewell Health Centers

Ironton-Lawrence Community Action Organization

Lorain County Health & Dentistry

Lower Lights Christian Health Center

Mercy Medical Center

Muskingum Valley Health Centers

Ohio Hills Health Services

PrimaryOne Health

The HealthCare Connection

Third Street Family Health Services

Viola Startzman Clinic

Wood County Community Health


ECHO Community Health Care

Eskenazi Health Center

HealthLinc, Inc.

HealthNet Inc. 

Indiana Health Centers, Inc.

Jane Pauley CHC 

Maple City Health Care Center

Matthew 25, Inc.

Neighborhood Health Clinics, Inc.

Riggs Community Health Center

Trinity Free Clinic, Inc.

Tulip Tree Family Health Care

Grantee Testimonials 

Grantees are part of the “health care safety net,” a blanket phrase used to describe health care organizations that deliver care to people who might otherwise be unable to access or afford it. This includes individuals who are uninsured, underinsured, covered by Medicaid or underserved in another critical way. Read more about why this funding is so necessary at this critical moment:


Cherry Health, Michigan

“The Delta Dental Foundation continues to be an invaluable partner in expanding access to oral health care to those in need,” said Tasha Blackmon, president and CEO, Cherry Health. “Our patients and communities are healthier because of the Delta Dental Foundation’s generous legacy of giving.”


Cincinnati Health Department, Ohio

“We are very grateful to have been selected to receive this DDF grant. The funds will be allocated to purchase HEPA filters and extra-oral suction devices for 11 dental centers,” said Dr. Anna C. Novais, dental director, Cincinnati Health Department. “Patients’ oral health care has been interrupted and postponed during the pandemic. With these additional safety precautions, we will be able to expand dental services that have been limited at this point due to current infection control practices aimed at decreasing the production of aerosols in dental settings. By optimizing air management controls in dental operatories, we can increase access to restorative and emergency dental treatment in addition to ensuring continuity of care for our patients.”


Dental Clinics North, Michigan

“Dental Clinics North is a partnership of local health departments operating safety-net dental clinics that serve low-income and underserved people who might not otherwise receive care,” said Pearline Bailey, director of clinical operations, Dental Clinics North. “The pandemic has made it increasingly difficult to uphold our mission due to high demand and amplified cost for PPE and COVID-19 dental equipment. The safety our employees and patients is our number one priority. Grant funding has allowed us to continue keep our doors open.  The Delta Dental Foundation has been instrumental in our ability to provide a safe environment and needed oral health care to northern Michigan communities.”


Eskenazi Health Center, Indiana

“As Indianapolis’s essential health system, we continuously strive to meet the needs of the community, and that includes providing access to high-quality dental care for everyone,” said Dr. Andrew Lane, chief physician executive, Eskenazi Health Center, the dental division of Eskenazi Health. “We are so thankful to be a recipient of funds from the COVID-19 Dental Equipment Fund grant, which will allow us to purchase the necessary equipment and protective gear to help keep our team members and patients safe.”


Hopewell Health, Ohio

“Hopewell Health Centers (HHC) is committed to providing essential oral health care services in communities where access is met with challenges. Increased expenses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic make additional funding paramount in order to meet the needs of the patients we serve,” said Alaina Himes, RDH, MS, oral health coordinator, Hopewell Health. “HHC’s commitment to providing oral health care to our communities continues to be realized during these challenging times thanks to the generous support from partners like the Delta Dental Foundation.”


Ingham Community Health Centers, Michigan

“Patient safety is a top priority at Ingham Community Health Centers. We take pride in doing all we can to ensure a safe and positive experience for every patient, every time,” said Kris Drake, director and CEO, Ingham Community Health Centers.


“All of the items we will purchase using the Delta Dental Foundation grant will be used to reduce dental aerosols. Aerosols are the main transmission route for the COVID-19 virus,” said Dr. Monica Stafford, dental director, Ingham Community Health Centers. “With the generous support received from DDF, the Forest Dental Center will be able to provide a safe environment for the treatment of our patients during this pandemic and in the future. We have been receiving a high volume of calls for dental care during the pandemic, and we are so pleased to be able to provide state of the art dental treatment and protection for all of our patients.”


Maple City Health Care Center, Indiana

“The COVID-19 Dental Equipment grant will enable us to provide risk-reduced dental care for a community that includes a preponderance of Hispanic, immigrant, uninsurable, and economically challenged people,” said Dr. James Nelson Gingerich, guardian of vision, Maple City Health Care Center.


Ohio Hills Health Services, Ohio

“We are very thankful for this funding opportunity through the Delta Dental Foundation. This past year has been so very difficult for everyone— including our patients and our dental staff,” said Dr. Amber Bauer, dental director, Ohio Hills Health Services. “We are grateful to be able to use these funds to provide exceptional infection control in our offices for patient safety, comfort, and peace of mind.”


PrimaryOne Health, Ohio

“The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected racial and ethnic populations in our communities,” said Charleta B. Tavares, chief executive officer, PrimaryOne Health. “These grant dollars will go towards improving oral health and subsequently the overall health of our patients.”


Riggs Community Health Center, Indiana

“Riggs is very excited to be a chosen awardee, and we are grateful for this grant. The last year has been a tough one for our dental practice and all the considerations we have had to make in the face of COVID-19. We have struggled to keep our dental practice schedules full due to the unease of patients being in the clinic and have implemented many new workflows and equipment over the last year. Since we are seeing less patients but adding additional equipment and sanitizing processes, this grant came at a fantastic time,” said Jolene Prather, director of operations, Riggs Community Health Center. “This grant allows us to address the ever increasing costs of PPE, sanitizing products, and our sanitizing equipment at a critical time for our dental practice. We endeavor to keep our patients informed of all the precautions we have put in place to help keep them safe, but to also keep our staff safe. This funding allows us to continue to address these processes to the benefit of our patients. Riggs is excited to share with our staff and patients the grant we have received in order to continue to address the challenges presented by COVID-19.”


The HealthCare Connection, Ohio

“With the hiring of two additional dentists and one additional hygienist within the last two months, this funding enables us to purchase two more ADS extra-oral suction devices that capture generated aerosols chairside,” said Dr. Lynda Roberts-Riddle, chief dental officer, The HealthCare Connection. “ Now each provider and team can practice more safely rather than making a difficult choice as to which team should have access to the device and its benefits.”


Tulip Tree Health Services, Indiana

“The cost of infection control has increased dramatically with the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant funds from the Delta Dental Foundation will help us cover unbudgeted ongoing maintenance of our new air purification equipment,” said Skye Coomes, LDH, dental program manager. Tulip Tree Family Health Care.


Valley View Health Centers, Ohio

“Community Action Committee of Pike County, Valley View Health Centers, greatly appreciates the funds received from the Delta Dental Foundation COVID-19 Dental Equipment grant,” said Sarah Williams, RDH, director of dental operations, Valley View Health Centers. “The funds will be used to better equip our dental clinics to provide a safer and more comfortable environment for our patients and staff.”


Wood County Community Health Center, Ohio

“We are planning this funding to buy dental equipment and supplies that will help minimize the amount of aerosols we generate in the clinic and help prevent the spread of COVID-19,” said Dr. Bushra Aouthmany, chief dental officer, Wood County Community Health Center. “We have been experiencing increased costs due to limited availability of supplies and the fact that we’re open and still seeing patients who cannot be seen anywhere else due to their insurance and costs of dental procedures. This grant will help defray those costs.”