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Dental Health Aides to Graduate, Go to Work in Rural Communities

Dec. 9, 2009

What: The Alaska Dental Health Aide Therapist (DHAT) program’s second graduating class will receive their certificates
indicating successful completion of the Dental Health Aide Therapist training program. These six graduates will go
on to a preceptorship with a sponsoring Tribal Health Organization prior to certification as a DHAT. The Alaska Native
Tribal Health Consortium will present white coats to seven first-year students transitioning to their second year of
training.

Why: For residents of nearly 200 small, isolated communities in rural Alaska, access to dental care is a serious problem.

The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and the Federal Community Health Aide Program (CHAP) Certification
Board joined forces to create Alaska’s DHAT program, which boosts the number of dental providers in rural Alaska
and the level of dental services available to Alaska Native people. Candidates with strong ties to rural communities
are selected for the DHAT program. They are trained to clean and fill teeth, perform simple extractions, and a range of
preventative services. DHATs must meet the rigorous standards set by the federal CHAP certification board. Alaska’s
DHATs are trained in the DENTEX program, a partnership between the University of Washington and ANTHC. Students
study for a year in Anchorage followed by a second year in Bethel.

When: 2 p.m. Friday, Dec. 11

Where: ANTHC, 4000 Ambassador Drive, first floor, Conference Room One

Who: Six graduates from around the state will receive their certificate of completion from the Dental Health Aide
Therapy training program.
• Bernadette Charles from Mountain Village; preceptorship is with the Yukon Kuskokwim Health Corp.
(YKHC) in Bethel
• Tambre Guido from Anchorage; preceptorship is with YKHC in Bethel
• Ben Steward from Seward; preceptorship is with Tanana Chiefs Conference in Fairbanks
• Ooyuan Nagaruk from Elim; preceptorship is with Tanana Chiefs Conference in Fairbanks
• Tatiana Barraclough from Atka; preceptorship is with Southcentral Foundation and will work for
Aleutian Pricilla's Island Association
• Marian Petla from New Stuyahok; preceptorship is with Bristol Bay Native Corporation in Dillingham

# # #

About the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium
The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium is a non-profit health organization owned and managed by Alaska Native
tribal governments and their regional health organizations. For more information, please visit www.anthc.org.

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