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|Title:||Dental service provision by oral health therapists, dental hygienists and dental therapists in Australia: implications for workforce modelling|
|Citation:||Community Dental Health, 2016; 33(1):15-22|
|D.N. Teusner, N. Amarasena, J. Satur, S. Chrisopoulos and D.S. Brennan|
|Abstract:||Objective: Dental service provision rates are necessary for workforce planning. This study estimates patient and service rates for oral health therapists (OHTs), dental hygienists (DHs) and dental therapists (DTs). To identify important variables for workforce modelling, variations in rates by practice characteristics were assessed. Design: A cross-sectional self-complete mailed questionnaire collected demographic and employment characteristics, and clinical activity on a self-selected typical day of practice. Setting: Private and public dental practices in Australia. Participants: Members of the two professional associations representing DHs, DTs and OHTs. Methods: For each practitioner type, means and adjusted rate ratios of patients per hour, services per visit and preventive services per visit were estimated. Comparisons by practice characteristics were assessed by negative binomial regression models. Results: Response rate was 60.6% (n=1,083), 90.9% were employed of which 86.3% were working in clinical practice and completed the service log. Mean services per patient visit provided by OHTs, DHs and DTs were 3.7, 3.5 and 3.3 and mean preventive services per patient were 2.1, 2.1 and 1.8 respectively. For all three groups, adjusting for explanatory variables, the rate of preventive services per patient varied significantly by practice type (general or specialist) and by the proportion of child patients treated. Conclusion: Services rates varied by age distribution of patients and type of practice. If these factors were anticipated to vary over-time, then workforce planning models should consider accounting for the potential impact on capacity to supply services by these dental workforce groups.|
|Keywords:||Dental services; dental service provision rates; dental hygienists; dental therapists; oral health therapists; practice activity; workforce planning; Australia|
|Rights:||© BASCD 2016|
|Appears in Collections:||Dentistry publications|
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