100% Locally Owned, Independent and Free

100% Locally Owned, Independent and Free

Colourful new dental vans could help kids feel more comfortable 

Do you have a news tip? Click here to send to our news team.

Photo of the day: rise and shine

"So lovely to see the sun. Lots of fishing boats out and about." Penny Robertson snapped this photo from the Castaways Beach carpark. If you More

Champions crowned on wild weekend at The Aussies

The Australian Surf Life Saving Championships came to a thrilling conclusion at Maroochydore during the weekend, when the best athletes came to the fore More

Foodie festival line-up promises to tantalise tastebuds

The program for the Sunshine Coast’s premier food and drink festival has been revealed, with a riverside showcase of beers and spirits among the More

Sami Muirhead: fond memories of the 1990s

Natalie Imbruglia and I go way back. Many of us loved her when she played Beth Brennan in TV soap opera Neighbours. That was in 1992 More.

‘Huge mess’: jewellery store targeted by ram raid

A century-old Coast jewellers has praised the community for its support after the business was targeted by an early morning ram raid. K. Smith and More

Your say: highway upgrade, bank relocation and more

Do you have an opinion to share? Submit a Letter to the Editor at Sunshine Coast News via news@sunshinecoastnews.com.au. You must include your name More

Two new school dental vans covered in colour are being rolled out on the Sunshine Coast, and it’s hoped their bright appearance will provide a welcome environment for kids.

The vehicles are wrapped in an eye-catching artwork designed by a local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artist, to create a culturally inclusive and friendly experience for children and their families visiting the mobile clinic.

The first van has arrived at Mooloolaba State School and is expected to service other schools including Stella Maris in Maroochydore, Mountain Creek and Kuluin, with the second van based in the Noosa region.

Fourteen dental vans and three school clinics provide oral health care to students at more than 130 schools in the Sunshine Coast Health region, including public, private, Catholic and independent schools.

The dental teams provide a range of services including check-ups, cleaning, x-rays, fillings and extractions, and in the 2022-23 financial year provided 22,000 appointments for children up to 15 years old.

The new vans add a splash of colour to the fleet, being wrapped in artwork produced by local artist Mandy Draper, to create a welcoming and inclusive space for all children.

The art represents the region of Gubbi Gubbi/Kabi Kabi Country, our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and the Sunshine Coast Oral Health team.

The new vans stand out.

Children are entitled to free dental care within the school environment, to ensure convenient and regular access to oral health care.

Minister for Health Shannon Fentiman said the vans should be more appealing to kids.

“Our mobile dental vans are important tools in making sure young Queenslanders are receiving oral health care from an early age and helping them develop healthy dental habits into the future,” she said via a Sunshine Coast Health media release.

“We want all Queenslanders to feel welcome when accessing healthcare, and I know the vans’ beautiful artwork will make visiting the dental vans a more welcoming and approachable experience for all children.”

Member for Caloundra Jason Hunt said the new vans were “fantastic news” for kids and their families.

“These vans mean less travel time for families as they come direct to children in school,” he said.

Eye-catching artwork designed by a local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artist Mandy Draper.

Member for Nicklin Robert Skelton said the vans’ bright colours would help kids feel more comfortable.

“It is so important for children to learn positive health routines from a young age and address any dental issues early,” he said.

“We know that some children can feel nervous stepping inside the unknown and clinical environment of a dental van, so we hope the bright and fun appearance of these new vans will help reduce some of those nerves.

“School dental vans ensure oral health is easily accessible for students, and this is a significant step in making visiting them an even more positive experience for all.”

Sunshine Coast Health acting oral health service director Jeremy Coory said the service welcomed the addition of the two vans to their fleet of mobile oral health clinics.

“The bespoke art piece has been added to the exterior to signal a welcoming and inclusive space for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children to come in and receive their dental check-ups and any further treatments,” he said.

Senior director Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health Sharon Barry said the vans’ appearance could help children to see the dentist.

“The bright and eye-catching artwork has been expertly crafted by local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artist Mandy Draper to represent the key areas of Gubbi Gubbi/Kabi Kabi Country, and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community’s pathway to the Sunshine Coast Oral Health Team,” she said.

“It’s important Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community and culture are incorporated into these mobile dental clinics, to ensure children and their families feel they are accessing a welcoming and inclusive space.”

Subscribe to our FREE daily news feed. All it requires is your name and email at the bottom of this article.

[scn_go_back_button] Return Home

Subscribe to SCN’s daily news email

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.