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News Bulletin : ADA News Bulletin June 2011
45 JUNE 20 11 AUSTRALIAN CENTRAL ASSOCIATION OF DENTISTS INC 36th ACAD CONFERENCE THREDBO 14-19 AUGUST 2011 Full Program and Registration details only available on-line www.icms.com.au/acad REGISTER NOW! Secretariat ICMS Pty Ltd 84 Queensbridge Street Southbank VIC 3006 P: +61 3 9682 0244 F: +61 3 9682 0288 Email: email@example.com Going Green . . . ACAD is working towards reducing it’s “carbon footprint”. No paper registration brochure will be produced - all information will be available online via www.icms.com.au/acad dental plaque and general debridement of oral microorganisms, together with regular dental reviews, maintenance and oral health education of nursing home staff, family members and carers will lessen the incidence and provide other health benefits. We can move forward. However, it will need the complete support of all dental healthcare workers, aged care organisations and Commonwealth and State governments. • Dental assessments must become a mandatory component of the aged care assessment team (ACAT) evaluation prior to nursing home placement. • The Oral Health Assessment Tool (OHAT) developed by the South Australian Dental Service on behalf of the Commonwealth government's Better Oral Health in Residential Care programme needs to be better promoted and understood by dental, medical and nursing professions. • It is essential that an information brochure or pamphlet needs to be produced by the Commonwealth government on the interrelationship between oral health, ageing and quality of life issues and be available through all medical GP clinics, hospital geriatric units and community centres. • The dental workforce includes people with many different skill sets. Managing oral and dental health in the elderly requires a cost effective multidisciplinary team approach. • Gerodontology or aged care dentistry should become a recognised dental specialty with dedicated postgraduate training. • A multidisciplinary study group or society with a focus on oral and dental health in aged care needs to be established. • New minimally invasive techniques need to be developed suitable for treating people in an aged care facility or in their own home. • Compulsory placement at aged care facilities as part of a student's undergraduate training for all registrable dental health workers (dentists, dental hygienists, dental therapists, dental prosthetists). This time would be spent in educating nursing home staff, residents, family members, carers, etc., in oral health, tooth brush instruction, denture care and maintenance, etc. • All graduates of a dental discipline should complete a minimum of 100 days working in a public dental facility after graduation. This commitment could be completed in a single block or part-time over the following graduation. This provision should also apply to foreign trained dental health care workers seeking Australian registration. The additional manpower will enable an improvement to public dental facilities and for regional centres to take responsibility for RACFs either by setting up dental services within the RACF, if it is big enough, or enable bussing of the residents who needs treatment to a public dental facility. The disaster facing our elderly through poor oral and dental health is not uniquely Australian -- it is a worldwide problem. WHO through its Global Oral Health Programme has called upon all nations to establish oral health programmes to meet the needs of the elderly.8 However, Australia differs from many other western countries as we have a high proportion of our elderly in RACFs rather than living in their own homes as in other countries. In June 2008, in NSW alone there were 899 RACFs accommodating some 60,545 residents of which 31,047 were in high dependency units.9 Making matters worse our nursing homes are stretched, the staff overworked and lowly paid and as a consequence have a high turnover of personnel. Although neglecting oral and dental care in the elderly can have dire results it is poorly comprehended by doctors, nurses and the broader community, whilst the dental profession has not appreciated the enormity of the issue. We all have a great deal of work ahead of us. Peter Foltyn Consultant Dentist Dental Department St Vincent's Hospital Sydney This paper is in part an extract from a submission to the Australian Government Productivity Commission Inquiry -- Caring for Older Australians. REFERENCES: References supplied with this article are available on request from firstname.lastname@example.org opinion page
ADA News Bulletin May 2011
ADA News Bulletin July 2011