The Oral Health Observatory (OHO), launched in 2014 by FDI World Dental Federation, aims to provide a coordinated approach to international oral health data collection. Researchers conducted a feasibility project involving 12 countries that tested the implementation of the methodology and data collection tools and assessed data quality from six countries.
National dental associations recruited dentists following a standardized sampling method. Dentists and patients completed paired questionnaires (N = 7,907) about patients’ demographics, dental attendance, oral health–related behaviors, oral impacts, and clinical measures using a mobile app. In addition, participating dentists (n = 93) completed an evaluation survey, and national dental associations completed a survey and participated in workshops to assess implementation feasibility.
Feasibility data are presented from the 12 participating countries. In addition, the six countries most advanced with data collection as of July 2020 (China, Colombia, India, Italy, Japan, and Lebanon) were included in the assessment of data quality and qualitative evaluation of implementation feasibility.
All national dental associations in these six countries reported interest in collecting standardized, international data for policy and communication activities and to understand service use and needs. Eighty-two percent of dentists (n = 76) reported a patient response rate of between 80% and 100%. More than 70% (n = 71) of dentists were either satisfied or very satisfied with the patient recruitment and data collection methods. There were variations in patient oral health and behaviors across countries, such as self-reporting twice-daily brushing which ranged from 45% in India to 83% in Colombia.
OHO provides a feasible model for collecting international standardized data in dental practices. Reducing time implications, ensuring mobile app reliability, and allowing practitioners to access patient-reported outcomes to inform practice may enhance implementation.
Sean Taylor et al. "Standardised Practice-Based Oral Health Data Collection: A Pilot Study in Different Countries." International Dental Journal. 14 March 2023. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.identj.2023.02.002
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