The Amazing Future of Dentistry and Oral Health

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Bert Mesko

By Bertalan Meskó, MD PhD

The Amazing Future of Dentistry and Oral Health



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2 Responses

  1. Back to Reality
    [Expansion of dental care uncertain under new administration]

    Amid promises to overturn the health care reform law and re-engineer Medicaid, voters swept Republicans into power in November.

    Oral health advocates now are wondering what lies ahead for efforts to expand access to dental services to poor, working and uninsured Americans.



  2. Morale in dentistry drops (but don’t tell anyone)

    “Morale levels in dentistry drop – Morale amongst self-employed primary care dentists in the UK has fallen, according to NHS Digital.” By Seb Evans for, December 8, 2016.

    Evans: “A survey has found that the percentage of principal dentists with ‘very high’ or ‘high’ morale levels has dropped to 22% in England and Wales, compared with around 23% in 2013/14.”


    The more time dentists spend on NHS/health service work [think “managed care”] the lower their levels of motivation, according to the survey.

    Half of all survey respondents said they often think about leaving general dentistry, despite 55% of respondents saying they feel good about their job and 57% saying they have the opportunity to do challenging and interesting work.

    ‘We’ve known for some time that dentists morale has been declining with many feeling that they are spending more time dealing with regulation and less time treating patients,’ Neel Kothari, practice owner, said. [Sound familiar?]

    ‘There is now unanimous agreement that NHS dentistry [managed care] is unfit for purpose resulting in higher levels of demoralised staff.

    ‘The NHS is a heavily budgeted system that seems to prioritise access over quality care, which makes it hard for dentists to practice in a way they were taught at dental school. [Sound familiar?]

    ‘Whilst over promising and under-delivering may work for the Department of Health [and dental “insurance” companies], this report shows that its clearly not working for caring, ethically-minded dentists.’


    Here in the U.S., one would never read such discouraging news on Dentistry IQ – the upbeat, advertisement-friendly U.S. equivalent of

    I am certain almost all American dentists (quietly) agree that Evans’ description of “lower motivation levels,” describes the morale decline among preferred providers here at home as well. The difference is, leaders in the UK care enough about patient welfare to survey their contracted dentists’ concerns. On the other hand, conflicts of interest closer to home force our nation’s dental insurers to hide bad news from the public, and our equally-conflicted dental leaders don’t want to hear about it. It’s a good-ol-boy tradition that keeps revolving doors spinning at ADA Headquarters.

    Either way, insured patients are never warned about compromises that give under-financed dentalcare bad names… like “Delta Dental” – one star rating on Consumer Affair. Read the complaints for yourself. Share them with dental leaders.

    Transparency now!

    D. Kellus Pruitt DDS


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