Oral health crisis in Jamaica
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Monday March 19, 2012 – Jamaica is below the internationally accepted standard for the ratio of dentist per patient.
The country presently has one dentist to 70,000 Jamaicans, while the internationally accepted standard is one dentist to 3,000 patients.
These were among the findings revealed during the first local dentist in training at the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus.
President of the Jamaica Dental Students’ Association, Nicole-Ann Bromfield said the association was of the opinion that there was an oral health crisis on the island which had to be combatted by educating the public.
There are presently just under 170 registered in Jamaica, all trained overseas.
Ms. Bromfield, who was trained at the Howard University in the United States, said the JADSA palnned to launch a campaign under the slogan: Nurturing Healthy Smiles in All We Do, to push the message of preventative oral care rather than curative dentistry.
The dentistry programme was introduced in August 2010 in an effort to train local dental surgeons. The JADSA will be officially launched on March 29.
The UWI Mona campus introduced the DDS programme on August 2010 to train local dental surgeons and already has its first two cohorts who will form the founding membership of JADSA at its official launch on March 29, 2012 at the main Medical Lecture Theatre.