Expanding the Oral Health Workforce by Training Physicians in Dental Extractions

Center faculty, Stephen Martin, co-authors an article on expanding the oral health workforce through physician training. The piece will be featuredĀ in an upcoming issues of theĀ Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved.

Abstract: In the United States, vulnerable populations at highest risk for poor oral health are more likely to visit a physician than a dentist. Patients in acute dental pain often present to hospital emergency departments or primary care offices where only palliative care is available. While numerous measures to improve oral health access in the United States are necessary, the authors propose that physician training incorporate techniques in dental diagnosis and primary dental care, including extraction where indicated, to allow providers to deliver definitive dental measures to patients unable to access the dental health care system. These skills will allow primary care providers to improve oral health, and ultimately strengthen ties to oral health providers that will improve patient care.

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