Oral Health Assessment and Review
(Guidance in Brief published March 2011)
'Oral Health Assessment and Review' aims to facilitate the move from a restorative approach to patient care to a preventive and long-term approach that is risk-based and meets the specific needs of individual patients. It also aims to encourage the involvement of patients in managing their own oral health.
A Guidance Development Group, comprising individuals from a range of branches of the dental profession, was convened to develop and write this guidance, assisted by our Programme Development Team. Draft guidance was subject to wide consultation (see SDCEP Guidance) and a less detailed 'Guidance in Brief' version was created in response to feedback received with input from an advisory group of representatives of dental primary care. The Guidance in Brief incorporates some important developments including:
- Oral Health Assessments: comprehensive assessments that are only carried out for new patients and then at intervals of 12 months for children or 24 months for adults.
- Focussed Oral Health Reviews: interim reassessment of elements of oral health previously identified as of concern, carried out at variable intervals depending on the patient's risk of future oral disease.
- Applicability: clarification that the approach described is not suited to patients who only attend for urgent care.
- Record keeping: noting those assessment elements that have been completed and recording positive findings.
Some practices will already provide care for many of their patients in a way that reflects the guidance recommendations. However, for others, implementing this approach may represent a significant change to current practice. Therefore it is important to note that:
- adopting this approach is not expected to be immediate, though some aspects could be implemented incrementally
- the development of complementary practice software will greatly facilitate following the guidance.
The Guidance in Brief refers to a full version of the guidance which is now also available to download for reference.
Printed copies of the Guidance in Brief and Quick Reference Guide have been distributed to all dentists in Scotland.
Page last edited: 30 May 2012