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Pediatric Dental Resident's Education on Children with Special Health Care Needs in the United States

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Purpose: To describe pediatric dental residents education as it pertains to children with special healthcare needs (CSHCN).

Methods: A web-based survey was administered to 80 program directors of pediatric dental residencies recognized by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD). The survey identified demographic data and education and training methods pertaining to CSHCN.

Results: Forty surveys (50 percent) were received from programs in all six AAPD regions. Programs that treated 4,500 patients or less/year were statistically less likely to require a specific assessment and were less likely to use written tests to assess competency treating CSHCN. A specific special needs didactic course (88 percent) and journal articles (85 percent) were the most common didactic training methods. The majority of the programs (69 percent) offered more than 20 hours of didactic education. On average 36.3 percent of the patients treated in residencies reported to be CSHCN and each resident clinically treated and average of 13 CSHCN/week. One-third of the respondents planned to increase CSHCN education in the next three years. Almost 70 percent of respondents supported the standardization of a national curriculum regarding CSHCN.

Conclusions: A wide disparity exists among residencies regarding education related to CSHCN. Most pediatric dental residency directors support the national standardization of CSHCN education.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Associate professor and chair, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, School of Dentistry, Oregon Health and Sciences University, Portland, Ore., in the USA;, Email: [email protected] 2: Pediatric pediatric dentist in private practice, Parker, Colo., in the USA

Publication date: September 1, 2017

More about this publication?
  • Acquired after the merger between the American Society of Dentistry for Children and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry in 2002, the Journal of Dentistry for Children (JDC) is an internationally renowned journal whose publishing dates back to 1934. Published three times a year, JDC promotes the practice, education and research specifically related to the specialty of pediatric dentistry. It covers a wide range of topics related to the clinical care of children, from clinical techniques of daily importance to the practitioner, to studies on child behavior and growth and development. JDC also provides information on the physical, psychological and emotional conditions of children as they relate to and affect their dental health.
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