Bulletin of Dental Education

Around the Dental Education Community - May 2011

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 Specialty Endodontics Training Begins at University of Tennessee 

An Advanced Specialty Education Program in Endodontics has been announced for the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) College of Dentistry. Adam Lloyd, B.D.S., M.S., has been added as Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Endodontics.

Approval from the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) to begin the advanced specialty postgraduate program was received in March. Student applications will be accepted starting July 2011, with the charter class set to begin in July 2012.

“The endodontics program expands our ability to teach, practice, and meet the needs of Memphis-area patients with even more specialized care,” UTHSC College of Dentistry Dean Timothy L. Hottel, D.D.S., M.S., M.B.A., said.  “With these significant additions to the College of Dentistry, for the first time in our long history, we have all dental specialties represented in our educational programs.”

Previously, graduates from the UTHSC College of Dentistry who wanted to enroll in endodontics specialty training had to leave Tennessee to do so. “Many talented Tennesseans had to travel to neighboring states for advanced training simply because endodontics was the only specialty not represented on our campus,” Dr. Hottel observed. “With the addition of the endodontics specialty, we can more completely fulfill our mission—to educate postgraduate students at the highest level of contemporary clinical practice, provide the community with one more opportunity for patients to keep their natural dentition, and build a foundation of well-trained professionals who are willing to give back to the dental profession.”

Through the UTHSC Dental Clinic, third- and fourth-year dental students provide more than 40,800 patient visits to Mid-South residents every year under the close supervision of experienced faculty.

“Dean Hottel recognized the importance of the specialty, providing support and resources for the development of the new training program,” Dr. Lloyd said. “This enabled me to fashion the program into one that my colleagues and the state of Tennessee will be proud of.”

 UMKC Establishes Endowed Chair in Practice Management 

One subject that traditionally takes a back seat to clinical education is practice management—the business side of being a dentist. The “Annual ADEA Survey of Dental School Seniors: 2008 Graduating Class,” published in the August 2009 Journal of Dental Education (JDE), found that 33.4% of seniors felt underprepared and 33.4% felt somewhat underprepared in practice administration. Thanks to $1.5 million in combined donations, that is about to change at the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) School of Dentistry.

The Endowed Chair will develop a curriculum that will focus on exposing students to the realities of running a dental practice, such as how to finance a practice, manage debt, handle personnel matters, and set realistic financial goals. The Endowed Chair will also manage the day-to-day operations of the dental school’s proposed Innovation Clinic, which will operate just like a small dental practice. Through the Innovation Clinic, students will see patients from the Kansas City community and have a chance to build both their clinical and business skills. Students will work alongside dental hygiene students and dental assistants and will be involved in the clinic’s day-to-day operations, including scheduling, ordering supplies, solving personnel problems, record keeping, and billing.

"Applying principles of evidence-based decision making to product and equipment choices provides the opportunity to bring scientific review into the reality of daily practice," said UMKC School of Dentistry Dean Marsha A. Pyle, D.D.S., M.Ed. "Since the school's inception in 1881, we've been educating excellent dental clinicians. By establishing a faculty position and a facility dedicated to practice management, we're making an unprecedented commitment to preparing our graduates to be both excellent dentists and successful business people."

 Grant Supports Faculty Development and Recruitment  

The University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry Department of Pediatric Dentistry has received new funding that will help grow its team of faculty members specializing in treating children and teaching dental students about this important area of dentistry.

The California Society of Pediatric Dentistry Foundation selected the school to receive an inaugural faculty funding grant. The grant will support the recruitment of faculty, academic leadership development, start-up research funding, and an advanced degree in education for a selected new faculty member.

"We greatly appreciate the CSPD Foundation's generous support of pediatric dental education through this grant to our school," said Dr. A. Jeffrey Wood, Pediatric Dentistry Department Chair. "This additional funding will help us to continue to attract high-quality faculty members in this specialty to work with our students and patients."

"The California Society of Pediatric Dentistry foundation recognizes the crisis in pediatric dentistry education and is dedicated to improving the current situation for the future of our specialty," said Mr. Steve Gross, President of the California Society of Pediatric Dentistry Foundation. "Dr. Wood's faculty enhancement proposal is exactly in line with the Foundation's goals not only by enhancing the attractiveness of a faculty position at the school, but also by providing the means for the new faculty member to succeed and excel as an academician."

 ADA and ASDOH Announce New Community Dental Health Coordinator Program 

The American Dental Association (ADA) and the Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health (ASDOH) are launching the Community Dental Health Coordinator (CDHC) education and training program based at the university’s Mesa, Arizona, campus. The program will provide training for community health workers with emphasis on oral health education, prevention, and helping patients who may normally face barriers to receiving dental care.

In their initial phase of training in Arizona, the students (who are practicing dental assistants and dental hygienists) will complete 12 months of online coursework administered by Rio Salado College. Upon successfully completing the didactic portion of their training, they begin six-month internships at ADSDOH. Students receive certification upon completion of the program.

“We’re delighted to join this pilot project,” said ASDOH Dean Jack Dillenberg, D.D.S., M.P.H. “The CDHC model is a natural fit with our mission and goals, a community-based education model to create caring community leaders who help those in need.”

ASDOH is one of four university-affiliated dental schools providing the CDHC program, which is jointly sponsored by the ADA. Other universities offering programs in conjunction with their dental schools include Temple University, the University of Oklahoma, and the University of California, Los Angeles. The ASDOH program will train students to work with American Indian communities.

“We’re excited to open this final phase of the CDHC pilot project at the Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health,” said ADA President Raymond F. Gist, D.D.S. “It will leverage the university’s many ties to the American Indian community and its proximity to both Rio Salado College and the southwestern tribal communities in which some CDHCs will work.”

Dr. Gist called the presence of George Blue Spruce, D.D.S., M.P.H., ASDOH’s Assistant Dean for American Indian Affairs, “an incalculable asset.” Dr. Blue Spruce was the nation’s first American Indian dentist and a former United States Assistant Surgeon General and Director of the Indian Health Service Phoenix Area Office. “George Blue Spruce is a pioneer, a leader, and an inspiration to all of us,” said Dr. Gist.

ASDOH has the largest contingent of tribally-enrolled American Indian dental students of any dental school in the nation, with a 100% graduation rate for Native students. All of ASDOH’s Native graduates practice in Native communities.

The three-year CDHC pilot project, funded by the ADA with assistance from Henry Schein, Inc., will run through 2012, at which point three cohorts (classes) of students will have graduated and begun working in underserved communities.

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