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CWRU dental school to open clinic in Shanghai
The Case Western Reserve School of Dental Medicine will open its first private orthodontic clinic in China this spring.
The clinic, called AmeriChin Orthodontics, will be located in downtown Shanghai and is part of a collaboration with the city's Jiao Tong University. The two institutions reached an agreement on the clinic in August. AmeriChin will feature both University logos.
Now Case is only waiting for their orthodontists to be licensed to practice in China, said Dr. Mark Hans, who developed the idea for the clinic four years ago with a colleague in Taiwan and will be its non-resident co-director.
The hope is to tap a market in Shanghai of people who are able to pay for private dental care.
"We knew that there was a demand for orthodontic services in China," said Hans, pointing out that only 3,000 orthodontists serve a population of 1.3 billion people. "When they have an opening at an orthodontic clinic there's a line that goes around the block."
But Hans and AmeriChin have a more specific target-- the 40,000 foreign nationals living in Shanghai. Many of them go to Beijing and Hong Kong for private medical care, Hans said, but would prefer to have a local orthodontist because braces usually require monthly visits.
AmeriChin will initially market its services to these people, Hans said. The clinic will be designed to resemble private dental practices in the United States.
Dr. Richard Griffith, a lecturer in orthodontics at Case, will direct patient care and spend two weeks every two months living in the city. There will also be a resident co-director, Dr. Feng Bing, chair of orthodontics at the Ninth People's Hospital at Jiao Tong University. The Chinese staff will handle any emergencies when Griffith is out of the country.
The final site has not yet been determined, but Griffith plans to set up operations when he spends several weeks in the country in March.
After the clinic is established, Hans thinks that services will expand to include those Chinese willing to pay for private care. More Case orthodontists will be added to the practice as they are needed.
"I think that the idea is that Shanghai is the place to start because it's the most westernized of all the cities, but ultimately it would be great to move on to Beijing and some of the other cities."
from the Cleveland Plain Dealer