December 2008

Volume 25, Issue 4

Access to dental services for people with a physical disability: a survey of general dental practitioners in Leicestershire, UK

Authors: W.O. Baird C. McGrother K.R. Abrams C. Dugmore R.J. Jackson
doi: 10.1922/CDH_2148Baird05

Abstract

Objective: To investigate the availability of facilities, including parking, accessibility and toilet amenities, for physically disabled people at dental practices in Leicestershire, and views relating to the provision of treatment, as reported by general dental practitioners. Basic research design: A cross-sectional postal questionnaire-based study. Setting: General Dental Service practices in Leicestershire, United Kingdom. Participants: Questionnaires were sent to all General Dental Service practices (n=123) within Leicestershire. Main outcome measures: Facilities for physically disabled people as reported by general dental practitioners and views of practitioners in relation to provision of treatment. Results: The response rate from general dental practices was 80%. The views of 120 (42%) of the 284 dentists approached relating to the provision of treatment to people with a physical disability were recorded. Although up to 77% of the dental practices were considered by practitioners to be accessible to someone using a wheelchair, only 7% also had suitable parking and toilet facilities. The majority of responding dentists treated patients with a physical disability, but 76% of practitioners found it difficult to provide treatment to this group. Concerns regarding the financial cost of providing treatment were raised. There is evidence that conditions are less than optimal in general practice settings for patients with a physical disability receiving treatment. Only nine of the 123 practices in Leicestershire had appropriate parking, access and toilet facilities for physically disabled people. Conclusion(s): Facilities for physically disabled people at general practices in Leicestershire are limited. If inequalities in dental health among the physically disabled are to be successfully reduced, steps must be taken to make practices more easily accessible with suitable facilities, and to increase awareness of services offered by appropriate dental practices. Key words: Access, general dental practice, physical disability.

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Retention and effectiveness of fissure sealants in Kuwaiti school children 211-215 Download
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Oral health and treatment needs among 15-year-olds in Tehran, Iran 221-225 Download
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Caries prevalence and need for dental care in 13–18-year-olds in the Municipality of Milan, Italy. 237-242 Download
Number of teeth and serum lipid peroxide in 85-year-olds 243-247 Download
Access to dental services for people with a physical disability: a survey of general dental practitioners in Leicestershire, UK 248-252 Download
Short Communication - Risk indicators of dental caries in 5-year-old Brazilian children 253-256 Download

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