Last month Dr. Crabtree was pleased to be part of the team of 938 volunteers who came together for the Texas Mission of Mercy event at the 2014 American Dental Association (ADA) Meeting in San Antonio. According to the San Antonio Express newspaper, the event drew quite a crowd the day before the doors even opened: “Families, couples, and lone visitors stood in a line that snaked around the building, seeking relief from throbbing pain, headaches and gum disease.”
Dr. Crabtree treated close to a dozen patients and says that the overall feeling from everyone he served was an attitude of appreciativeness and goodwill. Dr. Crabtree’s last patient of the day, Becky (pictured above) told Dr. Crabtree that she had arrived to wait in line at 1:00 in the morning. She had been in pain and needed treatment for 2-3 large cavities. Cost was an obstacle for her, so she was hopeful that she could get the help she needed at the Mission of Mercy event. She was very grateful to Dr. Crabtree and thanked him several times.
Dr. Maxine Feinberg, President of the ADA (pictured left), stopped by Dr. Crabtree’s station to visit with the patients, inquire as to their wait times and overall satisfaction, and to confirm the program’s benefit to the community. She also personally thanked Dr. Crabtree for his service.
“The most rewarding part of my job,” Dr. Crabtree says, “is having the opportunity to make someone feel better.” Dr. Crabtree finds it gratifying to help patients directly and looks forward to participating in events like this. The two assistants who worked alongside Dr. Crabtree drove in to San Antonio just for the event. He didn’t know either of them but he soon discovered that both lived in or very near to Katy. One hailed from Sugar Land and another was a brand new resident of Cinco Ranch. Both assistants were pre-dental undergraduate students who were bursting with enthusiasm to help others.
Dr. Crabtree was impressed with the way the event was coordinated. “It took a lot of volunteers to put it together and everything ran very smoothly,” he says. The volunteers came from 36 states and 10 countries. The team succeeded in reaching their goal of treating over 1,000 patients in 12 hours. Together, these volunteers performed over half a million dollars’ worth of dental services including exams, cleanings, fillings, extractions, flippers, and full dentures to underserved patients.