Oral health outreach and education in a non-dental, American Indian setting
Taubert, Kate Lisco.
MetadataShow full item record
Tooth decay is the single most common chronic childhood disease (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2014) and children with minority and low socioeconomic status are at an increased risk for early childhood caries (ECC) development. The number of children who routinely visit primary care providers is much higher than those who have seen a dental provider (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2008). Thus, pediatric primary care providers are in an opportune position to provide oral health screenings, interventions, and referrals. The purpose of this quality improvement project was to identify, implement, and evaluate a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) pediatric oral health outreach and education quality improvement project in an American Indian, pediatric primary care setting. The intervention contained three parts including a caries risk assessment, caregiver education, and a same-day dental home referral. All caregiver/child dyads age birth - 5 years presenting to the pediatric clinic for a well-child visit were eligible and consented to the intervention (n = 47). The results determined that 86.84% of the sample population was at high risk for caries development and that 52.78% of children with first tooth eruption had previously seen a dentist. Of those children, 78.95% had caries. For children with first tooth eruption that had not seen a dental provider in the past three months, a successful completed referral rate of 72.41% was obtained. The average intervention duration was 4.73 minutes. The intervention was successful in integrating well-child and well-dental visiting into a combined visit that was feasible to sustain. All caregiver/child dyads consented to the intervention and received age appropriate oral health education. This interprofessional collaboration and was effective in addressing three aspects of oral health prevention and outreach. Oral health is part of total health, and thus should be incorporated into routine well-child visits.