203114 Improving Oral Health of Undreserved Populations Using a Virtual Dental Home

Wednesday, November 11, 2009: 9:30 AM

Paul Glassman, DDS, MA, MBA , Professor of Dental Practice and Director of Community Oral Health, University of the Pacific School of Dentistry, San Francisco, CA
The Virtual Dental Home describes the use of community-based oral health providers (COHP), dental hygienists and assistants, working in community settings in collaboration with dentists in dental offices and dental clinics. The system provides health promotion, care management, and technical dental procedures in a distributed environment. COHPs function in school-based settings, recreation centers, residential facilities for people with disabilities, nursing homes, and other community settings. COHPs collect digital records including radiographs, digital photographs, digital charts, health history, and consent information. These records are posted to a web site where a collaborating dentist accesses and reviews the records, makes a preliminary diagnosis and develops a treatment plan, some or all of which can be carried out in the community. Some people can have all the procedures they need performed by the COHP in the community setting. These procedures include: education; dental cleanings; placement of “bonded glass-ionomer” temporary restorations when the individual needs to be put into a holding pattern until they can see a dentist for definitive restorations; and care management over time. Other people need to see a dentist at some point for the technical procedures that only a dentist can perform. Many people do not need the in-person services of a dentist and can maintain oral health using this distributed and collaborative system while others have an easier time being referred to a dentist who now knows the person and their oral health needs after having reviewed their digital records.

Learning Objectives:
1. describe the virtual dental home 2. discuss the advantage of a virtual dental home over dental homes in dental offices 3. disucss the techniques for creating distance collaboration systems

Keywords: Access to Care, Technology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: 36 years as practitioner, educator, researcher in this area.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.