Penn Dental Medicine

Patient Care

Patient Care

Penn Dental Medicine Clinics » Patient Information


Welcome to Penn Dental Medicine. We are pleased that you have selected us for your dental care. Our School is committed to providing comprehensive, patient-centered oral health care, within the scope of our educational programs, since 1878. This means that our coordinated health care team, consisting of our faculty, students, and staff, will fully inform you of the findings of our examination and the available treatment options.

We will then partner with you to provide appropriate treatment that is also responsive to your preferences, needs and value.


The primary role of the Penn Dental Medicine Clinical Education Program is the training of dental health professionals. Patients are charged a reasonable fee to cover the operating costs and services of the clinic. Patient candidates who apply to Penn Dental Medicine may not permanently become active patients to be treated by our student doctors if not appropriate for our educational environment.

The care performed by our student doctors is overseen by our faculty, to ensure the highest quality. This may result in longer treatment lengths for most of our procedures than would occur in a private dental office. The student doctors will also have periodic educational breaks, similar to other teaching institutions. During these times, the patient clinics are not open for routine dental appointments. Patients should consider the amount of time necessary to complete their care at Penn Dental Medicine to make sure this will not impose any undue hardship.


The School of Dental Medicine Clinics are located at 240 South 40th Street, Philadelphia, PA (at the corner of 40th and Locust Streets). See directions »

Services Available

A full range of general and specialty services are available through the teaching clinics of the School of Dental Medicine, including the following:

How to Become a Patient

The first step in making an application to participate in our program is to schedule an initial examination. Appointments may be made by phone at 215-898-8965 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.

During your initial examination, your medical history will be recorded; a physical examination and a brief dental examination will be performed to determine if you are eligible to participate in our program. In addition, an oral cancer examination will be completed. Radiographs (x-rays) may be taken based on your individual needs.

If you are eligible to participate in our program you will be assigned to a student in our Predoctoral or Postdoctoral Clinics, depending on your treatment needs. During your second appointment, your student doctor, under faculty supervision, will complete your examination using comprehensive diagnostic techniques and will develop a personalized treatment plan. If this treatment plan is in accordance with our educational needs, you will be accepted to participate in our program, and treatment will begin on your next appointment.

If you are not accepted into our program, we will recommend a dental treatment that we feel is in your best interest to pursue. The fee for this process is non-refundable, but copies of any radiographs taken may be sent to another dentist upon request.

If you already have an outside dentist and you are seeking specialty dental care, including, but not limited to endodontic (root canal), periodontic (gums), oral surgery, implants, orthodontics (braces), and oral pathology services, our specialty clinics will accept direct referrals. Appointments may be made by phone at 215-898-8965, and a written referral from your provider is required. Upon completion of the work for which you have been referred, you must go back to your outside dentist for the remainder of your care. We are unable to accept you for any treatment other than the one prescribed by your provider.


All treatment in the Penn Dental Medicine Predoctoral Clinics is provided by students. Your assigned Patient Care Unit Coordinator or student doctor will schedule your appointments.

Clinic starts promptly at 8:00 a.m. and extends to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. You should plan to have at least four (4) hours a week available for your dental treatment. This may be two 2-hour appointments, or one 4-hour appointment, depending on the nature of the procedure. Since you are being treated by student doctors overseen by faculty, your appointments will be longer and possibly fewer procedures may be preformed than if you were treated by a private dentist.

Evening appointments are available on Monday and Wednesday, 5:30-8:00 pm.

Appointment Cancellation

Appointments may be cancelled only if it is absolutely necessary and at least 24 hours in advance. All cancellations must be communicated to your Patient Care Unit Coordinator. Compliance with this policy will allow you to receive your treatment in a timely and efficient manner.

If you fail to keep your appointment without notice or cancel with less than 24-hour notice, or are more than 20 minutes late without notice for three (3) scheduled appointments during one (1) calendar year, you will be dismissed as a patient.

Please remember that your student doctor depends on you to make your appointments.

Comprehensive Care

If you are accepted to participate in our program, a personalized comprehensive treatment plan will be recommended; you will be advised of the benefits and risks of this course of treatment, as well of the prognosis or outcome. An alternative treatment plan may be presented with its attendant benefits, risks and prognosis.

Patients will not have the option to select only limited portions of the recommended treatment plan or to split services between Penn Dental Medicine and another provider, except in the following instances: 1) Emergency treatment only: Care would be limited to the relief of pain and suffering and necessary steps to assure that the situation would not recur; 2) Direct referral by an outside dentist for specialty care.

Patient Information

Call 215-898-8965 to make an appointment.

Patient Care Guide

View the Patient Care Guide »

The Robert Schattner Center
University of Pennsylvania
School of Dental Medicine
240 South 40th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6030