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News Bulletin : ADA News Bulletin August 2010
16 AUGUST 2010 The Australian Dental Association Inc. (ADA) hopes debate taking place in the lead-up to the 2010 Election will produce some effective outcomes relating to dental care delivery in Australia. The ADA has requested that the major political parties respond to a list of questions on dental care programmes. Responses (or lack thereof) will then be compiled into an ADA Federal Election 2010 Report Card which will be accessible from the ADA website (www. ada.org.au). "The key component of any Australian oral health solution is to focus attention on those within the community that have difficulty accessing dental care. The ADA's strong recommendation to all parties is to introduce a scheme that will direct its immediate attention to improve access to dental services for Australia's disadvantaged, whether this be financial or geographic", Dr Neil Hewson, ADA President said. The ADA has the effective and practical solution and that is to: • Direct urgent attention to provide improved access to dental health delivery to disadvantaged Australians. Concentrate on the population groups whose oral health is particularly poor, which include the financially disadvantaged, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons, people living in remote and regional communities and those with special needs. • Limit eligibility to all Federal dental schemes to financially disadvantaged Australians. • Adopt the approach outlined in the ADA's proposal, DentalAccess. This will deliver long-term dental care to those within the community that require it due to disadvantage and provide effective treatment to this group providing long-term dental solutions. • Increase investment in university and clinical training infrastructure and retention of academic staff. • The progressive introduction of a Foundation (Intern) year to provide new dental graduates with mentoring and also help alleviate some problems regarding access to dental services currently suffered by disadvantaged Australians. • Introduce a rural and regional incentive to correct the maldistribution of the dental workforce. • Develop educational programmes that will help all Australians (young and old) learn how best to look after their own teeth. The ADA has reviewed the major dental schemes from all over the world including the National Health and Hospitals Commission's proposed 'Denticare Australia' programme and recommends that 'Denticare' and other schemes will not suit Australia. ADA President, Dr Neil Hewson said, "About two-thirds of Australians report they have or can gain access to quality dental care. We urge the parties to provide for a significant investment in dental care targeted to the disadvantaged. Targeting the needy will provide better equity than a limited universal dental plan which will only provide poor dentistry to the poor." Watch out for the ADA Federal Election 2010 Report Card for the views of the major parties. Source: Media release, Australian Dental Association Inc., 20 July 2010. The ADA places dental care for disadvantaged Australians ON THE ELECTION AGENDA media release
ADA News Bulletin September 2010