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ABSTRACT: The Fiji School of Medicine is the primary health care educational institution in Fiji and possesses the only dental school in the Pacific. The oral health programme is a multi-entry/exit programme. The aim of this study was to determine the perceived sources or stress and at risk groups within the undergraduate oral health care programmes.
A modified version of the Dental Environment Stress questionnaire was used to assess levels of stress for 41 items.
A total of 115 undergraduate students participated (response rate = 84%). Of the respondents, 54% were male and 46% were female; 55% were Indo-Fijians, 18% Indigenous-Fijians, 8% Polynesians, 7% Micronesians, whilst Melanesians and others were each 6%. Moderate to severe stressful items were: full loaded day, followed by criticism from clinical supervisors in front of patients, amount of assigned work, fear of failing a course or year, examination and grades, financial resources, fear of employment after graduation and fear of facing parents after failure. Of the questionnaire items, 24% had significant differences across year groups. Overall, third years were most stressed followed by fourth years, fifth years, first years and second years. Indo-Fijians were the most stressed, followed by Indigenous-Fijians, Polynesians, others and Melanesians. Females were significantly more stressed than males for 27% of items. Private fee-paying students were more stressed than sponsored students.
Overall stress levels were slight to moderate and were higher in senior years, Indo-Fijians, females and private fee-paying students.
European Journal Of Dental Education 06/2007; 11(2):99-103. · 1.01 Impact Factor