ADA’S ‘DENTAL CHECK-UP’ ON POLITICAL PARTIES
Friday, August 13, 2010
The major political parties have finally provided some clarity on their proposed dental health policies. The deafening silence has ceased. The Australian Dental Association Inc. (ADA) requested parties respond to the Association’s 10 questions on dental health policy to be collated into an Election Report Card.
The Election Report Card is now available below. It is now up to the people of Australia to score it and provide their view at the ballot box.
“It is pleasing to see that most of the parties support a targeted dental scheme where the provision of services to those in greatest financial and oral health need would be provided. Direct urgent attention is needed for disadvantaged Australians, who include the financially disadvantaged, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons, people living in remote and regional communities and those with special needs. What we want is equitable access to dental care for all Australians and to do this we need to target the 30 plus per cent of Australians who are disadvantaged”, Dr Neil Hewson, President of the ADA said today.
DentalAccess is the ADA’s solution to this issue and has been proposed to Government. It will provide funding to those in the Australian community who are disadvantaged (economically, geographically or otherwise) and will deliver to them a suite of services that will enable them to achieve long-term good oral health – not just basic dental care and the continuation of two tiers of dental care which will be the case with the universal schemes proposed.
The ADA proposal also details other effective and practical solutions to issues such as:
Increasing investment in university and clinical training infrastructure and retention of academic staff for existing dental schools;
The progressive introduction of a Foundation (Intern) year to provide new dental graduates with mentoring and also help alleviate some problems regarding access to dental services currently suffered by disadvantaged Australians;
Introducing rural & regional incentives to correct the maldistribution of the dental workforce; and
Developing educational programs that will help all Australians (young and old) learn how best to look after their own teeth.
ADA’s proposals can be viewed by clicking on the submissions tab.
Report Card on Federal Dental Health Policies Election 2010