Last summer for the first time members of the Kentucky Oral Health Coalition were asked to nominate “Bright Spots”  in their community. Bright Spots are classified as organizations, projects, coalitions, schools, programs, models, or initiatives that target, address, and/or invest in key oral health priorities for people in Kentucky of every age group, geographic location, race and ethnicity with an emphasis on equity for low-income adults and children.

In the fall, Bright Spot nominee applications were reviewed and the first annual Bright Spots were selected and unveiled during the annual KOHC meeting.

Over the next few weeks, each Bright spot selected will be highlighted here, on the Kentucky Oral Health Coalition’s Blog page and monthly listserv.

Today the Bright Spots Committee is pleased to recognize Big Sandy Health Care. Big Sandy Healthcare is a private nonprofit corporation that has been in existence for over 42 years.

Mission/Vision: Big Sandy Health Care is an organization committed to providing access to quality healthcare to the residents of southeastern Kentucky. Their vision is to continue to be the preeminent primary care organization in this area well into the future. In the past five years, Big Sandy Health Care has rapidly expanded the dental program.

Most Compelling Data:  Big Sandy Health Care’s (BSHC) dental teams have been providing dental services in area schools since the 2006-2007 school year. The teams, which consist of a dentist, two dental hygienists, and an assistant, provide dental services in the schools by utilizing portable dental equipment. Big Sandy Health Care’s dental staff provided services to 2,567 unduplicated students during the 2013-2014 school year; 2,920 during the 2014-2015 school year; and 2861 during the 2015-2016 school year. Big Sandy Health Care expects to provide dental service to over 3,500 students in school settings in Floyd, Johnson and Martin counties during the  (2016-2017) school year. In addition to providing dental services to area schools, Big Sandy Health Care has worked in conjunction with the Floyd County Health Department to provide free dental care for uninsured adults every summer.

New Mobile Dental Unit: A new mobile dental unit was purchased in 2017.  This unit is fully equipped with two state-of-the-art dental stations, including digital dental X-ray.

Area Served: Big Sandy Health Care provides services for the Big Sandy region of Eastern Kentucky including Magoffin, Martin, Johnson, Floyd, and Pike Counties

Community Partners:

  • School systems
  • Local Health Departments
  • Veterans’ centers,
  • Learning Institutions: University of Kentucky, University of Pikeville, Big Sandy Community and Technical College

Dr. James Stambaugh, a dentist at Big Sandy said,“I’m proud to work for an organization such as Big Sandy Health Care. Our Board of Directors and executives value oral health and have enabled our dentists, hygienists, and assistants to make an impact on the oral health of our region. There is a strong relationship between our leadership, our clinicians and the community which makes our dental outreach program highly effective.”

Vist Big Sandy’s website for more information.