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General dental practices with and without a dental therapist: a survey of appointment activities and patient satisfaction with their care.

Barnes, Emma ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6447-6647, Bullock, Alison Deborah ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3800-2186, Cowpe, Jonathan, Moons, Kirstie, Warren, Wendy, Bale, Susan, Chestnutt, Ivor G. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9228-800X, Hannington, David, Allen, Michael and Negrotti, Ceri 2018. General dental practices with and without a dental therapist: a survey of appointment activities and patient satisfaction with their care. British Dental Journal 225 , pp. 53-58. 10.1038/sj.bdj.2018.522

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Abstract

Introduction Policy changes regarding the role of Dental Hygienist-Therapists (DTs) have been implemented in recent years with a view to promoting delivery of oral health-care through a more preventive-focused, team work approach. Aims To explore i) treatments led by dentists and DTs, and ii) patients' satisfaction with the care they received. Materials and methods Six case-studies of general dental practices in Wales, UK: three with, and three without a DT. For each participant, a patient-satisfaction questionnaire and a staff-member-completed appointment record form were completed. We sought to recruit 150 patients seeing a dentist and 100 patients seeing a DT, per case-study practice. Results 1,224 patients were recruited in total (314 DT and 910 dentist appointments). Preventive work accounted for nearly half of all treatments. Dentists, in practices with a DT, undertook significantly less preventive and restorative work, and significantly more extractions and advanced treatment (p <0.005, χ² = 15.352). Patient satisfaction and confidence in dentists' or DTs' ability was uniformly high (97% and 99% each group respectively). Conclusion Practices with DTs provided a more preventive-focused approach to oral health-care delivery; dentists in these practices performed more complex work. Positive patient satisfaction and confidence in practitioners' ability suggest patient acceptability of a preventive model.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Cardiff Unit for Research and Evaluation in Medical and Dental Education (CUREMeDE)
Dentistry
Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education
Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
ISSN: 0007-0610
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 10 April 2019
Date of Acceptance: 22 January 2018
Last Modified: 09 Dec 2023 08:25
URI: https://orca.cardiff.ac.uk/id/eprint/108403

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