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Do you see what I see? Identification of child protection concerns by hospital staff and general dental practitioners

Olive, S., Tuthill, D., Hingston, E. J., Chadwick, Barbara Lesley ORCID: and Maguire, S. 2016. Do you see what I see? Identification of child protection concerns by hospital staff and general dental practitioners. British Dental Journal 220 (9) , pp. 451-457. 10.1038/sj.bdj.2016.331

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Aim An exploration of the threshold that dentists, doctors and nurses recognise for dental and child protection (CP) actions in sample clinical cases, and any differences between these professional groups. Method We present a cross-sectional survey of dentists, doctors and nurses (50 each), who regularly examine children, utilised five fictitious vignettes, combining an oral examination image and clinical history reflecting dental and CP issues. Demographics were collected, and each participant gave their likely action for the cases presented. Results Dentists were significantly better at answering the dental element than the doctors and nurses, (P <0.0001) with no significant difference between these two; only 8% of the latter had undergone any training in assessment of dental health. Although 90.6% of all professionals had undergone CP training, dentists were significantly less accurate at identifying the CP component than doctors and nurses, (P <0.0001) between whom there were no significant differences. Those with higher levels of CP training were most accurate at identifying correct CP actions. Conclusions CP training is effective at improving recognition of child maltreatment, although there remains a worrying lack of knowledge about thresholds for action among dentists. Doctors and nurses have minimal training in, or knowledge of, dental health in children, thus precluding appropriate onward referrals.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Dentistry
Subjects: R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics > RJ101 Child Health. Child health services
R Medicine > RK Dentistry
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
ISSN: 0007-0610
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 14 June 2016
Date of Acceptance: 5 April 2016
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2023 14:31

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