Meet Gary Wright.
Gary is a San Francisco resident who once had a busy career in advertising and marketing. A heart attack and subsequent life changes left him without paid health insurance, and he was unable to afford the medical and dental care he needed. Ongoing health issues prompted a premature end to Gary’s career in 2006, and ten years later he underwent a triple bypass, which made it even more difficult to care for himself. For a long time, dental issues simply had to take a backseat.
Sadly, this is an all-too-common situation for many older adults in the U.S. That’s why the Delta Dental Community Care Foundation launched a multi-year program in its 15-state and Washington D.C. operating area to identify and address systemic causes of poor oral health among older adults, especially those living in poverty, people of color and those whose mobility issues keep them from receiving oral health care.
Fortunately, Gary was able to receive assistance through a Community Care Foundation grant to Meals on Wheels San Francisco. While his heart health still makes it hard for him to exercise, he says he’s grateful for the independence he gained from the Community Care Foundation and Meals on Wheels San Francisco.
“The most consistent thing I have is food through Meals on Wheels,” says Gary, now 70. “That frees me from worry. It allows me to think about things I want to do, like walking my dog, Leo.”
Visit our website to learn more about the Delta Dental Community Care Foundation’s Senior Oral Health Program and how it’s helping seniors in need.