Case Study: ECU School of Dental Medicine

Improving access to dental care in rural communities

In rural communities, lack of access to medical services contributes to poor overall health. Learn how East Carolina University School of Dental Medicine is delivering dental services to rural communities while ensuring their students stay connected.



  • Rural communities often lack regular access to medical and dental services
  • Lack of access contributes to poor overall health among rural populations
  • Patients needing specialist care may need to travel long distances just to get a diagnosis


  • Eight remote clinics, or Community Service Learning Centers (CSLCs), serve patients from every county in North Carolina
  • 50,000 patients treated
  • Telemedicine enables patients to connect to specialists when needed
  • Students and residents complete rotations while staying connected to classroom instruction
  • Post-doctoral residents live and work in the rural communities they serve for the entire year

What they're saying

Being in an innovative environment like this allows us to push the limits of teledentistry and push the limits of how we most effectively educate our students.

T. Rob Tempel, Jr., DDS, MSS, Associate Dean for Extramural Clinical Practices, ECU School of Dental Medicine

Who is ECU School of Dental Medicine?

Industry: Education
Location: Greenville, North Carolina
Size: 200 students, 74 faculty, 251 support staff