The aim of this study was to investigate the process of implementing the transfer of child patients from the community dental services to the general dental services, for dental care. A postal questionnaire investigated the current activities of district dental officers regarding the implementation of the transfer. Utilising data from the questionnaires, a series of interviews was set up with the following individuals in three districts: district dental officers, two community dental officers, the general manager of the family health services authority, the chairman of the local dental committee, and a general dental practitioner. The majority of respondent districts (65.3 per cent) reported procedures in place for the referral of children from the community dental services to the general dental services. Examination of the interview data revealed that the extent to which individual community dental officers implemented the referral process showed individual variation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To compare the caries prevalence of Community Dental Service (CDS) patients in Leicestershire with the same age groups in the population, and to assess the effectiveness of the CDS in reaching dentally disadvantaged children.
The caries prevalence of five- and 12-year-old children attending CDS clinics in Leicestershire was recorded in parallel with population data obtained from the British Association of Community Dentistry (BASCD) survey of these age groups in the county. BASCD criteria and conventions were used in both studies.
A total of 354 five-year-old and 383 12-year-old CDS clinic patients, and the respective BASCD population samples of 1815 for five-year-olds and 1753 for 12-year-olds.
In both age groups CDS clinic patients had a significantly (P < 0.01) higher caries experience. The provision of treatment for five-year-old CDS clinic patients was greater than that for the five-year-old BASCD population sample. This was also the case for the 12-year-old CDS clinic patients, who, in addition, had twice as many fissure sealants per patient than those in the BASCD sample. The mean DMFT of 12-year-old clinic attenders and the proportion of these children with caries experience were found to be higher than those for children with the poorest scores on the Townsend Deprivation Index.
The CDS appeared to be effective in reaching, and providing treatment for, dentally disadvantaged children in Leicestershire, and as such in providing a complementary service to the GDS.
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