Indian Health Service Online Submission, Consultation, and Reporting (OSCAR) System for Evidence Based and Promising Practices, Local Efforts, Policies and Resources. (logo: A Circle of Healthy Initiatives for American Indians and Alaska Natives)

Outstanding Leadership Directly Impacting the Community

Program Type: Local Effort - Programs and/or activities that have not been evaluated but are identified by local programs as producing positive results.

The first step was to change the clinic from one that was more of an emergency clinic to a general dentistry facility. This entailed education the patients on their oral health issues, how to improve, and the value of getting their treatment completed. In the past, the staff would see primarily short duration emergency procedures and then would have had significant amounts of lag time. Now the staff had to step up and see additional restorative patients. The quality of care needed to be improved. The staff’s mindset was a major issue that had to be overcome. Currently they enjoy having staff who are patient orientated who buy into the mission. Also, as they continued to increase services, so additional staff had to be hired and trained. This was a gradual process as the new hires needed role models-things worked out we. In addition, facility issues were present. The supply room was cleaned out, catalogued, and an ordering system implemented. This helped to reduce costs. The equipment had been neglected so it was either repaired or replaced. The clinic was pained and new flooring placed. Now the patients feel the respect that they deserve by having treatment areas that are greatly improved. Other improvements included obtaining, implementing, and utilizing the Electronic Dental Records [EDR] and digital radiographs. Since PTN does not have a defined reservation per se, transportation of patients to the dental clinic from different service areas was arranged and patients were scheduled at specific times. A “Dental Camp for Youth” was held in the dental clinic. Young people were educated first by a slide presentation, that they participated in a hands on program where they placed sealants on models, and used a hand piece to “drill and fill” cavities on models. They finished up by taking impressions and creating their own sports mouth guards. This broke down barriers and they were now some of the facilities best patients. In order to increase Native American presence in the dental field a “Ponca Dental Office Trainee” position was created and filled. This person is learning to be a dental assistance with the encouragement to go further in the field if she so desires. The dental staff has embraced this opportunity to teach someone about their profession. Staff meetings are geared towards educating the staff in the many facets of dentistry- the more they are educated the more that they feel confident to participate in patient care/education.

Age Group(s):
Children, Adolescents, Adults, Elderly

Site Type(s):
Work site

Health Indicator(s):
Oral Health

Service Area:



Name: Janelle Trottier
Site or Location Name: Aberdeen Area I.H.S.
115 4th Ave. SE
Aberdeen, SD 57401
United States
Phone: [605] 226-7474

Primary Contact Name: Janelle Trottier
Site or Location Name: Aberdeen Area I.H.S.
2602 J. Street
Omaha, NE 68107
United States
Phone: [402] 733-1302