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Table of Contents   
EDITORIAL  
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 28  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 241
Redefining and reinventing dentistry


Executive Editor, Indian Journal of Dental Research, Director and Consultant Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon, Balaji Dental and Craniofacial Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

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Date of Web Publication14-Jul-2017
 

How to cite this article:
Balaji S M. Redefining and reinventing dentistry. Indian J Dent Res 2017;28:241

How to cite this URL:
Balaji S M. Redefining and reinventing dentistry. Indian J Dent Res [serial online] 2017 [cited 2017 Sep 21];28:241. Available from: http://www.ijdr.in/text.asp?2017/28/3/241/210674
A group of senior academicians, clinicians and researchers, in a meeting in April 2017 has met and come with a declaration named “La Cascada Declaration” regarding the status of dentistry. They have presented a 360-degree view of the present state of dentistry as it is practiced today.[1] The issue is not new, and we have been discussing and deliberating about the oral health approach over the past few years. There have been published literature and commentaries on the same.[2],[3]

The authors of the “La Cascada Declaration” have presented a host of problems that dental education, research direction besides governmental policies pose to the clinical dental practice. In a bid to provide solution, they propose that dentistry needs to reinvent itself. They claim that focus of dentists should be realigned as oral physicians with more emphasis on preventive aspect of dental maladies and early curative interventions that is independent of financial remuneration and following best evidence-based dental practices. The other issue that they discuss is the inequalities in dental treatment between “rich and poor” as well as that of the “structural adjustment programs.” They state “there is an overproduction of dentists, most of whom provide services only in the main urban centers where private practice is more lucrative and services often fail to reach those in more remote areas of the country. In some cases, overproduction results in unemployment.”[1]

There is no doubt that the profession needs to discuss the concept of redefining and reinventing dentistry as “oral physicians” so that we do not disassociate ourselves from “overall oral health” like we did it with “general health.” This is the right time to deliberate the same, especially when there is an eminent switchover in the form of Indian National Health Policy 2017.[4]

I hope this editorial will stimulate healthy debate on the need of the redefining and reinventing dentistry as well as the “La Cascada Declaration” as applied to Indian situation. At present, there is no visible Indian representation in the group of authors, and hopefully, a uniform consensus will emerge among Indian dentists soon.

The forthcoming XI World Congress of Preventive Dentistry (an International Association for Dental Research-WHO initiative) and the 30th National ISDR meeting in New Delhi will be an ideal time to debate and approach a consensus on the same so that implementation can be planned.

 
   References Top

1.
The La Cascada Declaration. Available from: https://www.abstd.org/resources/public-documents/. [Last accessed on 2017 Jun 25].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Balaji SM, Mathur VP. Dental practice, education and research in India. Oral health inequalities and health systems in Asia–Pacific. Nat India 2017. [Doi: 10.1038/nindia.2017.28].  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Samuel SR. Dental education: Too many graduates in India. Br Dent J 2016;220:219.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
National Health Policy 2017. A Ministry Health and Family Welfare, Government of India. New Delhi; 2017. Available from: http://www.cdsco.nic.in/writereaddata/National-Health-Policy.pdf. [Last accessed on 2017 Jun 25].  Back to cited text no. 4
    

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Correspondence Address:
S M Balaji
Executive Editor, Indian Journal of Dental Research, Director and Consultant Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon, Balaji Dental and Craniofacial Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ijdr.IJDR_357_17

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