The Department of Pediatric Dentistry is a fun group, headed by chair, Dr. Marcio Guelmann. The department’s primary mission includes teaching, service and research. Their teaching program incorporates an innovative predoctoral curriculum designed to provide dental students with experience in managing children’s dental care needs.
In addition to their pre-doctoral training, the department has 13 residents in their post-doctoral training program, a very select group of applicants. The department is very proud of their current residents and graduates.
The pediatric department is dedicated to providing service in the community. They participate in the Head Start program, which is a pre-kindergarten educational experience for low-income children, and provide dental treatment to underprivileged children at Acorn Clinic in Brooker, Florida. They also provide dental care at the Florida School for Deaf and Blind in St. Augustine, Florida.
In addition to the department’s pediatric dental clinic in the UF Academic Health Center, the department’s faculty, residents and staff also provide care at the UF Health Eastside Community Health Clinic, a highly successful community-based facility whose dental clinic provides oral health services for low-income families.
The Tacachale dental clinic also falls under the department’s community service mission. This clinic enables the department to provide care to the residents of Tacachale, a state-operated residential facility in Gainesville, most of whom have severe and profound disabilities; it also allows their pre-doctoral students and residents to have valuable clinical educational experience with patients who have disabilities.
It is the department’s close-knit atmosphere that makes them stand out. “We are very much like a family—faculty, residents and staff. We all work together and help each other. We would like to think that makes us unique,’ Guelmann said.