Provider attitudes on dental care for pregnant women in newark, New Jersey
There is increasing evidence of the importance of dental care for pregnant women due to the association between maternal oral health with both maternal systemic health and child oral health. However, little is known regarding views on dental care among providers serving pregnant women. A provider survey (n=146) conducted in 2012 as part of March of Dimes Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait® program in Newark examined providers' perceptions of the importance of dental services during pregnancy, frequency of referral/provision of dental services; importance of periodontal disease as a risk factor for preterm birth (PTB) for African-Americans, and barriers to access. Frequencies were calculated and differences by age, ethnicity, and occupation were tested. Overall, providers viewed dental care as very (77.4%), somewhat (18.5%), and a little (4.1%) important. Providers felt their facility referred/provided dental services very (46.1%), somewhat (27.7%), and a little (26.2%) often. Periodontal disease as a risk factor for PTB was seen as very (53.8%), somewhat (33.8%), and a little (12.4%) important. The most common perceived barrier was lack of financial resources/insurance (56%). Frequencies did not differ significantly by age, ethnicity, or occupation; except views on periodontal disease as risk factor for PTB, with Admin/Tech more likely (66.7%) than Nurses (58.7%) or Physicians (27.3%) to agree it is very important (p=.006). As a result of this study, a fact-sheet on dental care for pregnant women was designed and distributed to providers.
Advocacy for health and health education
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related education
Explain why oral health care during pregnancy is important.
Identify barriers to accessing dental care for pregnant women.
Identify characteristics of providers associated with their perceptions of dental care for pregnant women.
Keyword(s): Oral Health, Pregnancy
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I was the primary research assistant working on a program evaluation focused on pregnant women. My graduate degree focused on dental public health. I am very interested in barriers to accessing oral health care.
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.