A Bayside dental practice along with two dozen others across the city and Long Island recently provided free dental services to local veterans.
Monday, Dec. 9, marked the first ever NYC Dentists Give Back Day, led by Dr. Bernard Fialkoff, in collaboration with the Mayor’s Office Department of Veterans’ Services. Twenty-five dentists from 24 practices, part of the newly formed NYC Dentists Give Back Group, performed free dental cleanings and exams for the holidays.
In 1962, Fialkoff emigrated from Cuba to the United States and recognized the sacrifices veterans made to safeguard the country. He added that many veterans go without dental care and live with pain and suffering associated with a lack of care.
“Only 8 percent of all U.S. veterans get care from the VA and worse yet, U.S. veterans account for 12 percent of the homeless population in the U.S. Many veterans are unable to receive dental treatment from the Veterans Administration because of strict inclusion criteria. I consider it my duty to give back to this great country,” said Fialkoff.
The following is a list of dentists who participated in NYC Dentists Give Back Day:
- Dr. Fernando Cordero – 341 Saint Nicholas Ave., Ridgewood
- Dr. Keith Chang – 38-09 Union St., Flushing
- Dr. Edward Portnoy – 39-12 215th St., Bayside
- Dr. Bernard Fialkoff – 56-03 214th St., Bayside
- Dr. Brigette Morales – 1432 Central Ave., Far Rockaway
- Dr. Maria Acebo – 99-04 57th Ave., Corona
- Dr. Joseph Alerte and Dr. Blanca Borboa – 218-54 99th Ave., Queens Village
- Dr. Hector Bernabe – 1916 Grand Concourse #1A, Bronx
- Dr. Robert Bruno – 68-03 41st Ave., Woodside
- Dr. Ben Cohen – 85-15 Main St., Briarwood
- Dr. Delfina Colon – 664 Academy Ave., Manhattan
- Dr. Robert Cukier – 76-01 Myrtle Ave., Glendale
- Dr. Melanie Englese – 30 Central Park S Suite 10D, Manhattan
- Dr. Hanette Gomez – 9605 40th Road, Corona
- Dr. David Issacs – 143 Mineola Ave., Roslyn Heights
- Dr. Jorge Gomez – 9605 40th Road, Corona
- Dr. Gopal Kalyanaraman – 361 Eastern Pkwy., Brooklyn
- Dr. Natalya Karpman – 121 E 60th St. Suite 5A, Manhattan
- Dr. David Lewis – 6711 75th St., Middle Village
- Dr. Suzanne Rubenstein – 85-09 151st Ave. Suite #LL, Howard Beach
- Dr. Alan Schwartz – 7805 141st St. Kew Gardens Hills
- Dr. Genaro Taveras – 2002 Grand Ave., Bronx
- Dr. Maria Torres – 78-11 35th Ave. 1e, Jackson Heights
- Dr. Robert Trager _ 14 S Service Road, Jamaica
“For your commitment to serving New York City’s vulnerable communities and for donating your professional services to veterans in need. Your contributions will prove fundamental by removing obstacles that prevent veterans from enjoying purposeful lives and securing meaningful careers,” said Commissioner James Hendon, in recognition of the NYC Dentists Give Back Group. “The New York City Department of Veterans’ Services commends you for your compassion and for your humanitarian efforts to support the veteran community.”
Other event collaborators included Harlem Globetrotter Robert Hunter, Metro Area Veteran Directors Johnnie Williams and Manuel Rodriguez, Veterans Advocate Terri Ham, Queens Chamber of Commerce Business Development Manager Brendan Leavy, Hispanic Dental Association President Dr. Hanette Gomez and Past Presidents of Queens County Dental Society. The group deemed Dec. 9 NYC Dentists Holiday Gift Give Back Day.
“Each New Yorker is very important to the well being of our city. Life is a group effort and the success of any program begins with the individuals in those groups. Any worthwhile activity begins with individuals and then spreads to families, communities, the city and then nationally. As community members, we can feel proud of helping and improving our city. What better way is there to do this, than help to help the very people who fought for our country’s freedom – our own veterans,” said Fialkoff.
For more information visit New York City Dentists Give Back Group on Facebook. Dentists interested in participating or sponsoring community events can email firstname.lastname@example.org.