A Washington Heights middle school is now home to the first orthodontic clinic ever to open in a New York City public school.

The clinic at the Salome Urena de Henriquez Academy is run by the Children’s Aid Society with St Barnabus Hospital in the Bronx.

Pete Moses, CEO of the Children’s Aid Society, says orthodontic services are sorely needed and difficult to access in poor communities where many kids have teeth that aren’t properly aligned.

“Our own case by case analysis of our middle schools in Washington Heights show that 20% of the children in our schools have malocclusions and require orthodontic care not for cosmetic purposes but for medical purposes,” says Moses.

According to Moses, the clinic will also be open to all neighborhood children, regardless of income.

[www.wnyc.org, November 1, 2006]