Bucharest, 20 November 2019 – In March 2019, the Merci Charity Boutique Association team initiated testing of the “Mobile Medical Offices and Units App” (ACUMM) for monitoring the performance of activities which are based on the mobile dental practice infrastructure, and entered the data of 772 children from rural communities in the counties Brașov, Constanța, Dâmbovița, Mureș, Ialomița, Ilfov, Prahova, Vaslui and Tulcea, reached by the mobile dental practice team. Data were collected by the Association team, after having obtained the parents’ consent. The app was developed by Tremend Software and financed by Vodafone Romania Foundation for an amount of RON 166,000.
ACUMM enables the Association team to monitor the performance of each activity by calculating the ratio between diagnosed and treated caries, analysing the types of interventions and their number, and also the value of dental interventions per child. For example, for the 772 monitored children, the team has performed interventions for oral prophylaxis and treatment amounting to RON 816,683.4, with an average of RON 1,057 per child. These calculations help us estimate the minimum budget required for the dental prophylaxis and treatment of children from rural areas, which amounts to RON 1,163,667,487 for more than 1,100,000 children from rural Romania.
“The Association succeeded not only to set up this mobile dental practice, but also to create the legal framework for the authorisation and operation of mobile dental practices and any other mobile medical units. We continued to collaborate and we succeeded to fund an app which will be helpful for all mobile medical offices and units by making possible the registration of data and information required for the operation of a mobile medical unit and also for the collection of statistical data”, reported Angela Galeța, Director of the Vodafone Romania Foundation.
The data collected from the 772 children so far revealed that 75.4% of them were at their first visit to the dentist. The number of diagnosed uncomplicated and complicated caries amounted to 3,386, with an average of 4.38 caries per child, above the upper European average which amounts to 3.5 caries per child. The team treated 890 uncomplicated caries, which meant 26% of the total identified caries, while the rest were complicated caries. In addition to treated caries, the team also applied 1,428 dental sealants, with an average of 1.85 dental sealants per child.
Of the total number of dental offices in Romania, only 13% operate in the rural area1, whereas over 1,100,000 children2 live in poverty in 12,951 villages3. Access to dental care is uneven and often non-existent, although children are legally entitled to a package of dental care4 covered by the county healthcare funds. In 2017, the Merci Charity Association created the first mobile dental practice in Romania; in 2018, they obtained the Minister’s order 606 from 7 May 2018 on the operation of mobile medical offices and units and in 2019 they launched a mobile app for the management of mobile medical units (ACUMM).
The data collected through ACUMM will generate up-to-date statistics on the incidence of dental caries in children living in rural areas, and at the end of 2020, the Association will release a study on the oral health of children from rural areas, providing statistically relevant data from the counties served by the mobile dental practice.
About the activities carried out within the partnership and the app: https://youtu.be/ApkU2aZzN_A
- 1 Sănătatea orală în România – raport de cercetare, (Oral Health in Romania – Research Report), 2016
- 2 World Vision România, 2016
- 3 http://enciclopediaromaniei.ro/wiki/Index:Sate
- 4 http://www.cnas.ro/page/pachetul-de-servicii-medicale-de-baza-pentru-medicina-dentara.html
About “Merciluță Fairy” dental practice and the Merci Charity Boutique Association
Merci Charity Association is a nonprofit organisation set up in 2012 with the goal of supporting humanitarian acts through mobile healthcare and education projects, with a focus on children with medical and social needs. The association owns two mobile dental practices and has a long-term objective of establishing a network of mobile dental practices and of promoting mobile healthcare services in Romania. The app was recently granted the award for mobile healthcare, “Anthony Vavasis Innovation Award”, by the Mobile Healthcare Association, USA.
The “Merciluță Fairy” mobile dental care project was launched in 2014 and has been supported by the Vodafone Romania Foundation under the “Professional Volunteer” and the “Good Deeds Fund” programmes. The total investment made by the Vodafone Romania Foundation in this project has amounted to almost RON 340,000 so far. The value of dental care services provided to children during the 4 years of activity amounts to RON 1,932,000, with an average of RON 920 per child for over 2,100 children.
The Vodafone Romania Foundation is a Romanian nongovernmental charitable organisation, established in 1998, which operates separately and independently from the company’s business. Over more than 20 years of activity, the Vodafone Romania Foundation has funded 1,132 programs run by 730 NGOs throughout the country, in the fields of healthcare, education and social services. These projects had almost 3 million beneficiaries – children, young and old people, physically, socially or economically disadvantaged people. So far, the Vodafone Romania Foundation has invested 30 million euros in projects run by non-profit partner organisations. More details about the Foundation’s programs are available at www.fundatia-vodafone.ro,
http://jurnaldebine.fundatia-vodafone.ro/ and www.facebook.com/fundatiavodafone.