Ten years ago, Pam Toney founded the Beaufort Jasper Volunteers in Medicine clinic in Bluffton, SC to serve those in need of medical care. And for ten years, Pam Toney dreamed of adding a dental clinic to the Beaufort Jasper Volunteers in Medicine offices. “Each month, I send 25 patients to one of our local dentists at a cost of anywhere between $1,000 and $3,000. So, I know there is a huge need, most definitely … this will allow us to do some primary care. And also, with our panoramic x-ray machine, we’ll be able to take those x-rays and send them to the dentists, alleviating a little of the cost to us,” stated Toney.
The clinic is 100% free to patients who qualify and is supported and staffed by the Bluffton community. In December of 2019, the clinic was approached by William and Sheryl Magro asking how they could help start the dental branch. The initial donation by William & Sheryl Magro started an effort that helped to secure several other grants and sponsors including Delta Dental, Truist, SC Family Physicians, and Community Foundation of the Lowcountry. In total, the clinic raised $250,000 towards the project of adding the Dental Clinic to the facility.
Fraser Construction completed the renovation necessary for the clinic to open. The now state of the art facility is equipped with contemporary designed dental chairs, wide screened computers, and panoramic x-ray equipment. “Fraser Construction was amazing to work with from start to finish. We were so pleased with how Fraser could see our vision. They were so thoughtful and accommodated our needs by working on the weekends so that our regular medical working hours would not be disrupted by the noise,” said Toney about the renovation.
Dental hygienist Pattie Swanson will get the clinic started this summer providing cleanings and dental education. Currently, the biggest need for the clinic is additional Dentists to volunteer. “Even just once per quarter would make a huge difference,” stated Toney. “We just want to be able to help those that have had to be referred in the past.”
For more information about the Beaufort Jasper Volunteers in Medicine Dental clinic, visit their website at https://bjvim.org/ You can also view a full interview and news story with Tim Guidera of WTOC here.