This week’s Member Spotlight is on the Austin-Rand Dental Center here in Tishomingo! The office is a Professional Corporation (PC) and has an interesting story. Dr. Ron Austin graduated from OSU with his undergraduate degree in 1973 and from dental school at OU in 1979. During his time there he received a prestigious award – the Public Health Service Scholarship – which is a program offered via the National Health Service Corp (NHSC) that places dentists in places in Oklahoma with a shortage of these types of professionals. Johnston County needed a dentist and after a visit, Dr. Austin moved to the area with his family.
Dr. Austin’s office was originally located behind the hospital and was run like a general practice. The only difference being that he was paying back the scholarship received and putting time toward the obligation to practice in the area as stipulated by the NHSC. When the obligatory period was over, Dr. Austin decided to stay in Tishomingo. In 2000, the team moved the practice to its current location at 1202 E. Main Street, which was a duplex owned by Sandy Northcutt at the time.
In 2004, Dr. Austin received a certificate from the Oklahoma Health Care Authority for his instrumental role in having the rules changed in the state to allow SoonerCare to cover orthodontic care in certain situations. The Austin-Rand Dental Center is one of four practices in the state that meet the standards and qualifications for this. The office also focuses on general dentistry including cleanings, fillings, root canals, extractions, partials, and dentures. It’s estimated that 80% of services are orthodontic and 20% are restorative in nature, using the latest digital technologies for imaging. Patients travel from all over the state and region to visit this office.
The staff at Austin-Rand were significant in the splash pad project for Tishomingo, have a small scholarship available at Murray State College, and a large endowment at Oklahoma State University for dentistry. The office also supports local efforts and is a member of the JCCC. Dr. Austin spent 15 years as an instructor for the Academy of Gp Orthodontics after completing a 2-year course in 1991 and continues to speak at their annual meeting. He says he has no plans to retire and enjoys giving children the opportunity to have a great smile, which in turn gives them an increased chance for success. For more information you can call their office at 580-371-2396 or visit www.tishdental.com.
Read next week for a Spotlight on Sooner Pharmacy!
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