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U.S. News

California: Doctor Helps Ensure HIV/AIDS Patients Get Proper Dental Care

July 19, 2011

Dr. Christina Chung runs the dental program at Desert AIDS Project (DAP) in Palm Springs, providing oral care to more than 600 patients.


For the past two years, Chung has commuted four days a week from Loma Linda to see approximately 15 to 17 patients per day. "I wish we were open five days a week or more because of the needs that the clients have here," she said. "We're doing as much as we can but there's just so much more we can do for them."

"Here at the DAP, many professionals collaborate together to help meet the diverse medical and social needs of our patients," said Chung.

HIV/AIDS patients can face many oral health challenges, from not having insurance to taking medications that make the mouth dry and cause cavities. Chung said it is her mission to help those living with the disease to gain control of their oral health.

Overcoming patients' fears of the dental chair is another motivator for Chung. "Like many of my patients, I'm fearful of needles so I am super-sensitive to their needs," she said. After a few visits, most patients start to feel comfortable and fall asleep in the dental chair, she added.

For more information, telephone 760-323-2118, or visit

Back to other news for July 2011

Adapted from:
Desert Sun (Palm Springs)
07.08.2011; Tamara H. Sone

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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
See Also
More News and Articles on HIV Groups and Medical Care in California

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