17th TRW Member of the Month: Staff Sgt. Coty Will

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Ethan Sherwood
  • 17th Training Wing Public Affairs

The 17th Medical Group Dental Clinic is responsible for the dental health of every service member on base. The day can get hectic, and many processes take time.

Staff Sgt. Coty Will, 17th MDG Dental Laboratory noncommissioned officer in charge, sought to reduce the backlog and increase efficiency. He modernized outdated processes and ushered in the future of the dental lab.

“I fabricate any and every appliance a patient would need,” said Will. “The appliances are tooth restorations, hard nightguards, athletic sports guards, retainers, and full mouth rehabs where we make an entire mouth of fake teeth without doing a denture.”

These appliances were created with a 3D printer and are cost effective alternative to the gold used in the past.

When Will arrived at Goodfellow, the dental lab had been without a technician for almost nine months. Materials were expired, most of the supplies were gone, and none of the equipment was operational. Within two months, Will implemented $170,000 worth of digital dentistry and ordered approximately $4,000 in materials to get the lab back up and running.

“Sergeant Will’s job is a big job,” said Tech. Sgt. Jennifer Romine, 17th MDG Dental Clinic flight chief. “Especially for one person with seven providers. Getting that entire system up and running is very difficult. But, he kept going and going and never took no for an answer.”

With the new equipment, the dental clinic can eliminate multiple appointments for a patient. The new process eliminates lost class time for both students and instructors, who would have come in for multiple appointments in the past.  In addition, it ensures active-duty members meet dental standards for deployments.

“We can do everything in one day,” said Will. “Bring patients in, scan the tooth, design the new tooth in the computer, and mill it out.”