Health News Florida
5:00 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

Free Dental Care at Florida State Fairgrounds Draws Hundreds

Hundreds of people showed up at the Florida State Fairgrounds Friday for free dental care sponsored by the Florida Dental Association.

At 5 a.m., there were about 800 people waiting outside, according to Dr. Terry Buckenheimer, president of the Florida Dental Association.

"And so it was a long line. It was sort of inspiring in a way, because we knew we were doing something that was needed. The bad thing is, we know it's needed," Buckenheimer said. "So, it was a good and a bad feeling."

About 1,300 volunteers from around the state are participating in the two-day Mission of Mercy event, the first one held in Florida.

Buckenheimer said he expects the volunteers will do more than a $1 million worth of free exams, X-rays, cleanings, fillings, extractions and root canals. 

The event continues Saturday morning from 5:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. Patients are seen on a first-come, first-served basis.