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New Redwoods Rural Health Center dentist Matthew Winkle shows his daughter how to brush her teeth.

Matthew Winkle, DDS is coming back to his roots in Humboldt County to join Redwoods Rural Health Center (RRHC) as the second full-time family dentist. With this addition, RRHC will soon be open Monday through Friday for dental services.

Dr. Winkle will provide comprehensive dental care to patients of all ages alongside Blake Olson, DDS, RRHC’s Dental Director. He will join the enthusiastic dental team of Jim Paige, RDH, Dental Hygienist; Cindy Walton, RDA, Dental Operations Manager; Barb Taylor, RDA, Dental Assistant; Lupe Balajadia, RDA, Dental Assistant; and Virginia Kent, front desk receptionist.

Dr. Winkle is a graduate of Eureka High School, College of the Redwoods, the University of California at San Diego, and the University of the Pacific School of Dentistry. He began his dental career with the Indian Health Service, working in rural Oregon for five years. "I was inspired by the television show ‘Northern Exposure.’ I loved that show. It seemed like such an adventure to be a doctor in the middle of nowhere," said Winkle. But now "I feel so fortunate to be going back home to Humboldt and working at Redwoods Rural Health Center. They immediately struck me as a really good group of people and the atmosphere is very warm and welcoming," Winkle added. Dr. Winkle will start seeing patients at RRHC in early March. He will be joined in his move back to the area by his wife April and daughter Svea.

Dr. Olson looks forward to expanding RRHC’s Dental Department: “I am really excited to welcome Dr. Winkle, who is such a positive and skilled dentist. With Dr. Winkle joining our team, we will be able to accept new patients of all ages and care for many of those in need right here in our SoHum community and beyond.”

Dr. Olson has been at RRHC for over three years, first as a staff dentist and since September 2009 as the Dental Director. He is from Phoenix, Arizona and a graduate of Arizona State University and the University of Southern California (USC) School of Dentistry. It was at USC that he applied for and was awarded a National Health Service Corps (NHSC) scholarship. NHSC scholars include dentists, physicians and other health professionals who choose community health settings after their training.

Redwoods Rural Health Center’s Dental Department provides comprehensive family dentistry. New adults and children are welcome. The Clinic accepts Medi-CAL, Healthy Families and most commercial dental insurance plans. They offer a sliding fee schedule discount program for low-income individuals and families. They are located at 101 West Coast Road in Redway. Call (707) 923-4313 to schedule your dental appointment today.

RRHC has a job opportunity for an energetic and skilled dental assistant (RDA and bilingual Spanish, preferred). Qualified applicants should e-mail their resume with a cover letter to Cindy Walton, RDA, cwalton@rrhc.org.

Visit Redwoods Rural Health Center on the web at http://www.rrhc.org.

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