Dental public health capacity worldwide: Results of a global survey



A survey was carried out to establish the extent of global dental public health (DPH) capacity. Senior stakeholders in DPH completed 124 surveys, covering 73 countries and all WHO regions. The survey evaluated DPH workforce within the country, funding, education, current services, and integration between public health and DPH in countries across the world. In 62 per cent of countries, DPH is only partially integrated in the public health system, while in 25 per cent of countries it has not yet been formally integrated. DPH programs at Masters level are available in 44 per cent of countries. Over half of countries have 0 to 10 trained DPH professionals. Because both poor oral and general health share several common risk factors, DPH must be integrated into national health systems and budgets, with an emphasis on having trained DPH specialists available in every country to collaborate in healthcare policy and provision. Key words: Population health planning, demography, needs assessment; Public health policy, legislation, ethics; Public health workforce 1. As both poor oral and general health share several common risk factors, the two should not be separated within general health agendas. 2. DPH integration into national health systems and budgets is a priority. 3. Trained DPH specialists should be available in every country to collaborate in healthcare planning.


Marta Lomazzi