Oral health is critical to systemic health.Yet billions of people are unable to fix or replacemissing teeth and suffer psychosocial and physiological consequences because they do not have access to care. Poor self-esteem, lack of self confidence, impeded from finding work, unable to properly eat a meal are just a few manifestations of a life without teeth, a life of constraints.
According to the global World Health Survey, complete tooth loss affects approximately 30% of old-age people 65-74 years.
According to the World Health Organization, severe tooth loss and edentulism (no natural teeth remaining) are widespread. Severe tooth loss and edentulism are one of the leading 10 causes of Years Lived with Disability (YLD) due to aging populations.
Smiles in a Suitcase seeks to discover and build out portable and low cost solutions in dentistry: Call it Smile in a Suitcase.
Groups such as Doctors Without Borders address medical needs in tragedies worldwide, but are severely limited to provide dental care because of the equipment required to do complex dentistry.
Maybe, just maybe, entrepreneurs paired with humanitarian dentists and business mentors, as well as start-up funding might move the needle on this challenge. It is worth the effort to help people worldwide.
Smiles in a Suitcase is an innovation competition in which entrepreneur and clinician teams bring their ideas, talents and networks together to heal fellow global citizens who are missing many or all of their teeth.
By replacing missing teeth, smiles will be restored, self-esteem renewed and lives transformed from despair to hope. Teams are constrained by criteria that ensure that the winning entry is effective in the remotest, poorest and least served areas ofour planet. Viable comprehensive business plans ensure a high likelihood of business success.
The winning team will receive a prize of US $100,000.
Teams have 5 minutes to pitch their idea via global conference call to a panel of judges. Six finalists are chosen and receive $5000 to continue their work.
Successful entrepreneurs and industry leaders help finalists build out their ideas.
Finalists present a comprehensive business plan aswell as working prototypes of their smile rehabilitationprocess. The competition winner receives $100,000,second place receives $25,000, and third placereceives $15,000.
All judges, mentors and administrative team members will be nonpaid volunteers
Total Prize money distributed: $170,000
Other admin expenses:
Travel stipend for finalist judges: $3000/perFood/Beverage for Final: $6000
Total funds needed: $194,000
Entire competition: $194,000
Pitch and Process prize money:$30,000
Prototype and Plan prize money:$140,000
General support levels:
Specialist prosthodontist and former Professor and Chairman, Dental Specialties, Mayo Clinic
Kristen Robinson Darcy:
Senior Vice President, Service and Marketing, Fidelity Charitable
Associate Vice Chancellor for Advancement, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus
Chief Financial Officer, Cenegenics Medical Institute
Specialist prosthodontist and Past-President, International College of Prosthodontists
Vice President, DIS Operations and Global Expansion, Dentsply Sirona