The Impact Of Dental Auxiliaries In Oral Health Delivery In Cameroon
Author: Agbor MA1, (BDS, MSc Dent), Azodo CC2 (BDS, MSc Physio., MPH, FMCDS). 1-Dental Dept, Nkwen Baptist Health Centre,
2-Dept Periodontics, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Nigeria. Correspondence: Dr CC Azodo, P.M.B 1111 Ugbowo, Benin-City, Edo State Nigeria 300001,
Objective: To assess the impact of dental auxiliaries in oral health delivery in Cameroon.
Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study of 47 dental auxil-iaries recruited from six of 10 provinces in Cameroon was conducted in 2010. A self-administered questionnaire elicited information on demography, training received and role in the clinic and opinion about their job. Results: Most of the respondents carry out amalgam fillings, dental prophylaxis, composite fillings, extractions, atraumatic restoration
(ART), fabrication of partial and full dentures. Few respondents carry out wound suturing, root canal treatment (RCT), treat minor injuries and mandibular reduction. More than half (52.5%) of the respondents treat 6-10 patients per day while 13 (29.5%) of respondents work without any direct supervision. Out of the respondents, 80.9% were formally trained and 25.6% were trained in Yaoundé University Teach-ing Hospital. A total of 61.7% received training for <3 years, 26.1% have not received any additional training after qualifying and 77.8% signified interest in further training. Most respondents (80.9%) con-sidered their work rewarding and interesting, 57.4% think their work is useful to the society and 38.3% find their work, tasking.
Conclusion: This study highlighted the importance of dental auxil-iaries in the oral healthcare delivery, their responsibilities, strength and limitations. The training and job specification was highly variable necessitating the establishment of regulatory agency to standardize the training and job description of dental auxiliaries in Cameroon.