PP Gus Dominguez introduced Dr David Goldsmith from the Rotary Club of Ballarat West, who provided an update on the Rotary dental project in Honiara in the Solomon Islands.
 
This project involves collaboration between the Rotary Clubs of Ballarat West, Berwick and Honiara and is registered with RAWCS. 
 
It also involves collaboration with the National Referral Hospital Management in Honiara. 
 
Betel nut chewing has created a lot of dental problems in the Solomon Islands.  Although there is no shortage of qualified dentists in the Islands, there is a major shortage of dental facilities.  
 
Currently, much of the dental work is conducted at the local police station, which regularly sees 100 patients arrive for dental work daily, yet only 30 can be treated.

The 300-bed National Referral Hospital has only one dental chair and because it has an X-ray machine, it deals solely with root canals and other complex dental works.
 
This project focuses on providing additional dental facilities at a section of the hospital.  The  allocated building was in such a bad state of repair, it needed quite a bit of work to make it ready for the installation of the dental equipment.
 
Working with Donations in Kind (DIK), the project has now delivered 8 dental chairs in good condition, together with other dental equipment.  There are now 10 dental chairs and equipment ready to be installed.
 
Part of the building is currently occupied by the Diabetic unit, but they will shortly be relocating to new premises. The Dental Department will then be able to take over the whole building, which includes renovated toilets, laundry, and reception.
 
When completed, this Rotary project will herald a new era for oral health in the Solomon Islands and will triple the dental facilities in Honiara.
Sponsors