The 2023 Amigos de La Cruz & Ensign Academy of Dentistry (formerly named Academy of LDS Dentists) completed its 19th year in the Puerto Vallarta area. Boise, Idaho area dentists Dr. Gordon Croft and Dr. Don Cook, are a miracle team to behold. A team compromised of family and friends have come to La Cruz for the past 15 years.

This year the team arrived on January 13 and departed on January 21. The clinic itself was held Jan 16-19. Doctors brought family members and staff to serve as assistants, sterile technicians and interpreters. Each year they include local dentists from the La Cruz area to work at the clinic. This year 4 local dentists assisted part-time with the team: David, MariCruz, Lupe, and Carlos.

The portable clinic consists of 4-5 Adec units for the doctors and two hygiene units. Some of the equipment and supplies left from the last visit are in storage in PV. The airport National Guard assisted in safe passage through Customs.

The primary school children in La Cruz (gr 1-6) are invited to come for free dental care. Amigos of La Cruz organizes the screenings, appointments, and transportation from the primaria to the Kids Club. The children are pre-screened by local dentists and placed in categories for their visit. The doctors and hygienists work at the Amigos Kids Club from 8-5 pm each day from Monday – Thursday. They try to make sure all kids receive a cleaning, toothbrush, and floss, as well as leave with a healthy smile. The treatments performed include fillings, extractions, pulpotomies and cleanings. The kids and parents are always very appreciative and kind.

2024 Dates: May 6 through 9, 2024. Permission Slips & Screening: Week of April 22 Dental Team arrives Fri May 3; Setup Sat, May 4 This allows BYU Pre-dental students to come on the trip. A special Thank You to volunteers: David Bailey (videographer); Izzy Simon (front desk intake and organizer); Marlin Simon (trouble-shooter and transportation); Sandi & Kent Nelson and Marilyn DiDuca (lunches for the Team and Volunteers), Carmen Tapia, Dunia Guiterrez and Annabelle Halloran for screenings and acting as interpreters; Mayra, Alejandra, and Lilly for entertaining the children as they waited and to act as interpreters and cleaning; Susan Parter for file organization. It truly takes a village – apologies if anyone was not included.

  • 177 Students
  • 196 Appointments
  • 160 Cleanings
  • 138 Fillings
  • 33 Extractions