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Healthcare A Swiss dental clinic on wheels

Since 2014, Michael Keller’s mobile clinic has been offering invaluable dental care to elderly residents in central Switzerland. 

After his studies, Keller wanted to open a dental surgery in Andermatt, canton Uri in central Switzerland, in a new health centre. However, he was delayed by lengthy construction work. That was when he discovered that a growing number of elderly people living in remote alpine valleys or in old people's homes in the mountains needed dental treatment. He thus decided to take his skills on the road. 

Keller found that many elderly people were neglecting their teeth. Home visits were not only in demand, but a necessity. His “Geriadent” project aims to raise awareness about the issue among other dentists, mobile nurses and old people's homes. The Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts is supporting his project, and canton Uri is considering whether to help fund it. 

Keller treats two to four patients a day. He finds his work extremely creative as he has to improvise. He takes a lot of time with each client and admits that as a normal dentist he could earn much more money. "I'm probably the poorest dentist in Switzerland," he says, but appears completely satisfied. 

Swiss photographer Remo Nägeliexternal link won second prize for this reportage in the “Swiss Stories” category at the "Swiss Press Photo Award". external link

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