On Thursday, Midland Community Healthcare Services (MCHS) opened the door to a renovated exam room at the Coleman Clinic that now houses a bariatric treatment chair.  The bariatric chair is suitable for use by all patients allowing big and tall, overweight and obese patients to be safely treated for medical and dental procedures on the same chair as all other patients.

“To the best of our knowledge, this is the only bariatric treatment chair in the region, “said Rick Schoel, the chief operating officer for the MCHS. “We looked into referring our very large framed patients out to another clinic but upon investigation, we could not find any clinic in the area which had a bariatric treatment chair.” 

There is an element of risk when a very large patient is treated in an average dental chair.  It can topple over or break, possibly causing injury to either the patient or the technician.   

“The bariatric dental chair allows us to extend dental care to those individuals who may otherwise have had to travel hundreds of miles in order to receive safe and effective dental treatment, “Dr. Elliot Ayoub explained. “We look forward to meeting the demands of our community in new ways,” he added.

MCHS found the manufacturer of treatment bariatric chairs was in England. The bariatric chair enables patients who exceed the weight limit of an average dental chair, which is about 275 pounds, to have quality health care at the Coleman Clinic located on the south side of Midland.  “We are committed to serving the whole community and removing all obstacles to quality health care”, said Dr. Michael Austin, CEO of MCHS. “We were able to purchase this rather costly medical equipment through a generous monetary gift by an anonymous local benefactor combined with some funding from the State of Texas.”

Prior to acquiring the bariatric chair, a very large person who needed dental care had to travel out of town or was admitted to the hospital to undergo general anesthesia for the treatment resulting in a costlier and medically risky situation for the patient.

“We have many patients in the Permian Basin who work in the oil fields that are very big and tall. It is our mission at Midland Community Health to recognize the needs of the community in which we serve and offer accommodations for all,” Austin explained. 


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