Open wide and say ‘aaah’

Free dental screening at KZN pre-primary school ‘a huge success’
Friday, December 10 2021

Smiling eyes and welcoming voices greeted 230 learners from The Lady of Natal Pre-Primary School who recently underwent free dental screening in a community initiative undertaken by oral health professionals from Netcare Medicross Bluff.

“On a day quite out of the ordinary and amongst an air of great excitement, the children all had a dental check-up and learned about the importance of oral hygiene from a young age, which cannot be underestimated,” said Dr Kyle Govender, a dentist practising at Netcare Medicross Bluff and part of the team on the day, which also included Dr Benians, Dr Singaram and their assistants.

According to Dr Govender, the learners received gift bags sponsored by Colgate containing toothpaste, among other items. “This collaboration between the different parties involved demonstrated the value of joining forces to promote dental health awareness, especially among children within a learning environment, when important healthcare messages can make a lasting impact,” he said.

Pic: Dr Robin Benians and his dental assistant Bridget Thornton giving a dental screening to a learner from the The Lady of Natal Pre-Primary School.
Pic: More precious than pearls. The Lady of Natal Pre-Primary School learners ready for their dental screenings through a community initiative undertaken by oral health professionals from Netcare Medicross Bluff.
Pic: Dr Robin Benians, head dentist; Bridget Thornton, dental assistant; Rajeswarie Palanivelu, dental assistant; Claudene Moodley, dental assistant; Dr Arasi Singaram, dentist; and Dr Kyle Govender, dentist, ready to provide dental screenings to the learners of the Lady of Natal Pre-Primary School.

Strict COVID-19 protocols were adhered to at all times by both the dental team and the school to ensure the safety of all involved. Parents were invited to provide their consent prior to the screening and received written recommendations from the team if the check-ups indicated that further dental treatment was recommended, following the initiative, noted Dr Govender.

“Netcare Medicross Bluff already treats a number of school principals in our surrounding communities and following the overwhelming success of this community outreach, we are starting to plan similar events at other schools in the area. We believe this to be particularly important for young children, as dentistry is still perceived by so many people as an unpleasant experience. However, fun-filled screening days such as this can shed a whole new light on the subject of dental hygiene.

Dr Oelie van Schalkwyk, dental director of the Netcare Primary Care Division, which includes Netcare Medicross, explains that Netcare Medicross Bluff forms part of the 66 medical and dental centres across South Africa which are administered by Medicross. All of these centres adhere to the overarching philosophy of integrating within their communities to be of service across the entire healthcare needs spectrum.

“Connecting with the communities we serve extends well beyond addressing current healthcare concerns. It also includes engaging and educating them about the benefits of prevention from a foundational level, which is an important part of our role as primary healthcare professionals,” concludes van Schalkwyk.


Notes to editor

Looking for a medical appointment? Netcare appointmed™ will make appointments for YOU with specialists practising at Netcare hospitals, GPs and dentists at Medicross medical and dental centres, and specialists at Akeso mental health facilities. Simply request an appointment online at or phone Netcare appointmed™ on 0860 555 565, Mondays to Fridays between 08:00 and 17:00.
To find out more about the services offered through Netcare hospitals and other of the Group’s facilities, please visit or contact the Netcare customer service centre either by email at or phone 0860 NETCARE (0860 638 2273). Note that the centre operates Mondays to Fridays from 08:00 to 16:00.

For more information on this media release, contact MNA at the contact details listed below.

Issued by:    MNA on behalf of Netcare Medicross Bluff
Contact:    Martina Nicholson, Meggan Saville, Estene Lotriet-Vorster or Clemmy Forsthofer
Telephone:    (011) 469 3016
Email:,,, or