Recognising and responding to domestic violence: exploring the role of student dentists

Croker, Felicity, Carrington, Ann, Burmeister, Casey, Shield, William, Winson, Chan, and Baker, Sandi (2017) Recognising and responding to domestic violence: exploring the role of student dentists. In: Faculty Development: affirming global connections and advancing diversity. p. 1. From: 4th International Conference on Faculty Development in the Health Professions, 25-27 August 2017, Helsinki, Finland.

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Background: Student dentists’s role in recognising and responding to domestic violence has not been investigated previously in Australia. The prevalence of domestic violence means that student dentists encounter traumatized women in their clinical practice, however, they report feeling ill-prepared for this role. A collaborative, innovative educational intervention is addressing this problem.

Summary of Work: The research aimed to explore dental students’ perceptions of the clinical effectiveness and value of an innovative ‘Recognise and Respond to Domestic Violence’ educational intervention. A series of workshops were delivered by expert facilitators for Dental Surgery students. Dental student researchers employed a mixed method approach to evaluate this intervention.

Summary of Results: Findings indicated a significant increase in students’ understanding and theoretical knowledge regarding domestic violence. They were enabled to embed awareness of domestic violence into clinical assessment. However, while recognition of domestic violence was achieved, further educational strategies are required to strengthen dental students’ confidence in responding appropriately within clinical practice.

Discussion: The study outcomes inform the timing and educational content delivered within the Bachelor of Dental Surgery. The research supports embedding the domestic violence content into dental curricula. Students’ capacity to respond to domestic violence is being strengthened through learning experiences including simulation and opportunities to practice techniques and employ strategies.

Conclusion: Recommendations from the 2016 study are being implemented and evaluated in 2017. Although the findings of this small study cannot be generalised, they suggest that other dental programs would benefit from a similar initiative that enables students to recognize and respond appropriately to domestic violence when practicing in community contexts.

Take-home Message: Dental professionals are in the unique position to identify domestic violence and and help manage its consequences. More emphasis is needed in undergraduate programs. Embedding domestic violence workshops, facilitated by experts, into the dental curriculum enables dental students to competently recognize and appropriately respond to women who experience domestic violence.

Item ID: 49954
Item Type: Conference Item (Abstract / Summary)
Date Deposited: 25 Aug 2017 01:23
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1607 Social Work > 160799 Social Work not elsewhere classified @ 50%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1105 Dentistry > 110599 Dentistry not elsewhere classified @ 50%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9303 Curriculum > 930302 Syllabus and Curriculum Development @ 60%
94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9401 Community Service (excl. Work) > 940199 Community Service (excl. Work) not elsewhere classified @ 40%
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