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CAMBRIDGE, Mass., June 13, 2017 – On Thursday, June 1st, The Forsyth Institute hosted its fourth annual fundraising event, Discover Forsyth: A Taste & A Toast To Good Health, to raise awareness surrounding the importance of oral health research. The event attracted over 230 oral health advocates and philanthropists. Forsyth honored local philanthropic relations director Sharon Driscoll with the inaugural Friend of Forsyth Award, and Former Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher with the Forsyth Icon in Health Award. The event helped to raise funds to benefit both the institute’s ForsythKids program and its cutting-edge research on oral health and overall wellness.

Dr. Satcher is a well-known oral health advocate who authored the first Surgeon General’s report on oral health. Upon receiving the Icon in Health Award, Dr. Satcher spoke about his vision to provide all Americans with access to healthcare and his mission to ease oral health disparities. Of the current state of access to oral health, Dr. Satcher cited the following statistic: 25 percent of children have 80 percent of the dental problems, demonstrating the staggering prevalence of oral healthcare disparities that still exist across the country to this day.

During his speech, Dr. Satcher said: “Medical care has so often separated the head from the body… However, oral health is critical to overall health and wellbeing. My dream is for everyone to have access to healthcare — and it’s a big dream. Even though we’re making progress, we still have a long way to go, but I believe that through good work and policy changes, we will get there.”

Programs such as ForsythKids help to level the playing field by bringing children’s dental health to underserved children in the places where they live and learn. The program partners with the community to make certain it is easy for children and their families to get high-quality dental care, which is critically important to their overall health and well-being. Working with visionaries like Dr. David Satcher and philanthropists like Sharon Driscoll helps the Forsyth Institute to deliver on its mission of providing oral health care to Boston’s most disadvantaged populations, as well as bring cutting-edge scientific discoveries from the lab bench to the population, a mission critical to creating healthy populations.

To learn more about the Forsyth Institute and the ForsythKids program, visit:

About Dr. Satcher

Dr. David Satcher served as the 16th Surgeon General and authored the first report on oral health to alert Americans to the full meaning of oral health and its importance to general health and well-being. He is currently the Founding Director and Senior Advisor for the Satcher Health Leadership Institute at the Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia.

Dr. Satcher has received over 50 honorary degrees and numerous distinguished honors including top awards from the National Medical Association, the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the Ronald Davis Special Recognition Award from the American College of Preventive Medicine, and the Symbol of H.O.P.E. Award for health promotion and disease prevention.  He received the Benjamin E. Mays Trailblazer Award and the Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Award for Humanitarian Contributions to the Health of Humankind from the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases.