Provision of oral healthcare and support in care homes in Scotland

White, V.A.A., Edwards, M., Sweeney, M.P. and Macpherson, L.M.D. (2009) Provision of oral healthcare and support in care homes in Scotland. Journal of Disability and Oral Health, 10(3), pp. 99-106.

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Aim: To describe the reported oral healthcare and support provided in care homes for older people in Scotland. Design: A cross-sectional, descriptive study was undertaken using postal questionnaires. A stratified random sample of 327 Scottish care homes was selected for inclusion in the study. The questionnaire was sent to the managers of the selected care homes for completion. Results: The response rate to the study was 72% (N=234). The vast majority of managers reported that their home had a provider of urgent dental treatment, although many managers raised concerns over the accessibility and responsiveness of the service. Only half the managers reported that oral assessments of residents were undertaken within one week of a resident's arrival at the care home; of those who reported that such assessments were undertaken, only 27% of managers reported that staff performing such assessments were trained to do so. All care home managers reported that staff provided oral healthcare assistance to residents if it was required; however less than half of managers reported that their staff received any training in this area. Care home managers were also less likely to rate oral health as a high priority, compared to other healthcare areas. Conclusions: The results of this study show that, in a large proportion of care homes for older people in Scotland, the provision of oral healthcare and support for oral health care assistance falls below that of currently published guidance specific to the oral health of older people in care homes.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Macpherson, Professor Lorna and Sweeney, Dr Petrina
Authors: White, V.A.A., Edwards, M., Sweeney, M.P., and Macpherson, L.M.D.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing > Dental School
Journal Name:Journal of Disability and Oral Health

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