BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WMBD) — Dental care for low-income residents will soon be available to residents in Bloomington-Normal on Medicaid.

Chestnut Health Systems received a $430,000 grant from the federal government to help fund its Bloomington dental clinic. The funds are a part of Community Project Funding in U.S. Congress secured by Illinois Congressman Rodney Davis (R-IL).

CEO of Chestnut Health Systems Dave Sharar said they’ve been talking for years about implementing dental into their realm of care.

“There are 40,000 Medicaid recipients on public insurance in McLean County and 50% of them never see a dentist. Around 1500 end up in the ED for a dental emergency, many of them wait for dental and live with pain and don’t have the resources or finances to pay for dental care upfront,” Sharar said.

Chestnut Health hopes to open the new dental facility early next year.

The $430,000 will pay for just under half of the estimated $1.3 million renovation of 720 West Chestnut Street on the current Chestnut Health Systems campus in Bloomington.

Rep Davis will not be in Congress after losing his June primary race for the newly redrawn 15th IL Congressional district. He said Tuesday he hopes his legacy is working together in non-partisan ways to bring tax dollars back to Central Illinois.