Utilization of nondentist providers and attitudes toward new provider models: Findings from the National Dental Practice-Based Research Network

Christine M. Blue, D. Ellen Funkhouser, Sheila Riggs, D. Brad Rindal, Donald Worley, Daniel J. Pihlstrom, Paul Benjamin, Gregg H. Gilbert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives The purpose of this study was to quantify, within the National Dental Practice-Based Research Network, current utilization of dental hygienists and assistants with expanded functions and quantify network dentists' attitudes toward a new nondentist provider model - the dental therapist. Methods National Dental Practice-Based Research Network practitioner-investigators participated in a single, cross-sectional administration of a questionnaire. Results Current nondentist providers are not being utilized by network practitioner- investigators to the fullest extent allowed by law. Minnesota practitioners, practitioners in large group practices, and those with prior experience with expanded-function nondentist providers delegate at a higher rate and had more-positive perceptions of the new dental therapist model. Conclusions Expanding scopes of practice for dental hygienists and assistants has not translated to the maximal delegation allowed by law among network practices. This finding may provide insight into dentists' acceptance of newer nondentist provider models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)237-244
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Public Health Dentistry
Volume73
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2013

Keywords

  • delivery of dental care
  • dental auxiliaries
  • dental group practices
  • dental practice patterns

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