Effectiveness, cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit of a single annual professional intervention for the prevention of childhood dental caries in a remote rural Indigenous community

Lalloo, Ratilal, Kroon, Jeroen, Tut, Ohnmar, Kularatna, Sanjeewa, Jamieson, Lisa M., Wallace, Valda, Boase, Robyn, Fernando, Surani, Cadet-James, Yvonne, Scuffham, Paul A., and Johnson, Newell W. (2015) Effectiveness, cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit of a single annual professional intervention for the prevention of childhood dental caries in a remote rural Indigenous community. BMC Oral Health, 15. 99. pp. 1-8.

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Abstract

Background: The aim of the study is to reduce the high prevalence of tooth decay in children in a remote, rural Indigenous community in Australia, by application of a single annual dental preventive intervention. The study seeks to (1) assess the effectiveness of an annual oral health preventive intervention in slowing the incidence of dental caries in children in this community, (2) identify the mediating role of known risk factors for dental caries and (3) assess the cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit of the intervention.

Methods/design: The intervention is novel in that most dental preventive interventions require regular re-application, which is not possible in resource constrained communities. While tooth decay is preventable, self-care and healthy habits are lacking in these communities, placing more emphasis on health services to deliver an effective dental preventive intervention. Importantly, the study will assess cost-benefit and cost-effectiveness for broader implementation across similar communities in Australia and internationally.

Discussion: There is an urgent need to reduce the burden of dental decay in these communities, by implementing effective, cost-effective, feasible and sustainable dental prevention programs. Expected outcomes of this study include improved oral and general health of children within the community; an understanding of the costs associated with the intervention provided, and its comparison with the costs of allowing new lesions to develop, with associated treatment costs. Findings should be generalisable to similar communities around the world.

Item ID: 41959
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1472-6831
Keywords: tooth decay in remote children, rural preventative dental care, Indigenous health, oral health preventive intervention, dental caries, cost-effective dental care
Additional Information:

© Lalloo et al. 2015. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

Funders: National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)
Projects and Grants: NHMRC Project Grant ID #1081320
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2015 14:24
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1105 Dentistry > 110599 Dentistry not elsewhere classified @ 40%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111704 Community Child Health @ 20%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111701 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health @ 40%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9202 Health and Support Services > 920204 Evaluation of Health Outcomes @ 30%
92 HEALTH > 9203 Indigenous Health > 920303 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health - Health System Performance (incl. Effectiveness of Interventions) @ 50%
92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920402 Dental Health @ 20%
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