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Children who qualify for the province's dental program will have to travel to Summerside or Charlottetown for treatment. (CBC)

The Dental Association of P.E.I is concerned how changes coming to the province's children's dental program will affect those living in rural areas.

Diagnostic and treatment services under the provincially funded program will only be offered at government clinics in Charlottetown and Summerside starting in October.

Dr. Brian Barrett, executive director of the Dental Association of Prince Edward Island, says under the new rules, families which qualify for the program will have limited financial resources.

He said he worries travel costs and the inconvenience of having to take time off work to get children to appointments could mean some children in rural P.E.I. won't get the dental care they need.

"Kids can no longer go to a private practitioner. They'll have to travel to Charlottetown or Summerside from wherever they live," Barrett said.

"There is the added price of the gas and travel and they have to go to a dentist they’ve never been to before to get the treatment done."

Provincial officials say they will monitor the impact of the changes.