In the News

Dentistry Today

Primary care postgraduate dental training programs supported by competitive Health Resources and Service Administration (HRSA) grant funding play a significant role in providing care to underserved populations, according to a study from the Oral Health Workforce Research Center (OHWRC) at the University at Albany’s Center for Health Workforce Studies

…“While this research is limited to a subset of HRSA’s overall investments, the study clearly shows the impact of federal funding on building institutional capacity to produce a sufficient dental workforce to meet the demand in primary care dentistry,” said OHWRC investigator Elizabeth Mertz. “The graduates of these programs are contributing in large measure to the oral healthcare of vulnerable and underserved patients in the US.”

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Dentistry Today

Dentistry has seen significant changes in the demographics of those who practice, particularly when it comes to gender, according to the Oral Health Workforce Research Center (OHWRC) at the University at Albany’s Center for Health Workforce Studies (CHWS).

Collaborating with the ADA, the OHWRC studied differences in dental practice characteristics and service delivery by gender to anticipate changes that might affect the availability of dental services for underserved populations in the future.

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Becker’s Dental and DSO Review

More women are entering the dental field compared to past years, according to a study conducted by the American Dental Association and the University of Albany (N.Y.) Center for Health Workforce Studies.

The study, published July 11, evaluated the differences in dental practice characteristics and service delivery by gender.

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The number of US pediatric dentists is expected to grow by more than 60% through 2030, according to new research commissioned by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD). Without major policy shifts, this drastic increase in supply could overtake demand for services.

The dental industry is in a time of transition — more dentists are postponing retirement and an increasing number of students are enrolled in dental school. A study published in the July issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association explored how these trends may affect pediatric dentistry (July 2019, Vol. 150:7, pp. 609-617).

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Rochester, N.Y. – Friday was Match Day at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. Nearly 100 students have been placed in programs to complete their residency training in 27 states…

…According to data from the Center for Health Workforce Studies, when surrounded counties are included, the number of primary care doctors per patient drops.

But compared to the state, the finger lakes region has more primary care doctors that some other parts of the state.

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BUFFALO, N.Y. — Nearly twice as many students from underrepresented groups enrolled in the class of 2022 at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University at Buffalo than in the previous year.

According to data from the Office of Medical Admissions at the Jacobs School, 33 students out of 180 students in the Class of 2022 are from underrepresented groups. The previous year, the first year that the Jacobs School’s incoming class size increased from 144 to 180, there were 18 students from underrepresented groups.

“Last year, we had a total of 18 underrepresented students, so we have almost doubled the number this year,” said Dori Marshall, MD, associate dean of admissions at the Jacobs School and clinical assistant professor of psychiatry…

…Even in a diverse state like New York, where African-Americans and Hispanics/Latinos comprise more than 30 percent of the population, she added, they make up just 12 percent of the state’s physician workforce, according to data from the SUNY Albany Center for Health Workforce Studies.

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More than 200 college students from underrepresented groups throughout New York State received a leg up in preparing for careers in medicine at the “Rx for Success: Preparing for Medical School” program held recently at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at UB…

…According to data from the SUNY Albany Center for Health Workforce Studies, even in a diverse state like New York, where African-Americans and Hispanics/Latinos comprise more than 30 percent of the population, they make up only 12 percent of the physician workforce.

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Faculty have long included digital learning in traditional onsite courses. But today’s approach to blended learning uses course design strategies and technology to actively engage the learner in a mix of onsite and online education, according to Rita F. D’Aoust, PhD, ANP-BC, CNE, FAANP, FNAP, FAAN, associate dean for teaching and learning at Johns Hopkins SON in Baltimore…

…Blended online and in-class approaches to nursing education are increasing, according to Jean Moore, DrPH, MSN, FAAN, director for the Center for Health Workforce Studies at the School of Public Health, State University of New York at Albany.

“For instance, UAlbany is exploring the possibility of a BSN completer program, and that is how it will operate,” she said.

By law, RNs in New York have to earn a BSN within 10 years of initial licensure. So, there’s great interest in the state to create opportunities for nurses to get their bachelor’s degrees through completer programs. Offering an online component to the completer programs makes them more accessible to nurses in parts of the state with fewer established BSN programs, according to Moore. “In New York, there aren’t as many BSN programs upstate as there are downstate,” Moore said. “The question is how do you make sure you have an adequate supply of nurses upstate, particularly in rural areas? That’s where I think building relationships between associate degree programs and BSN completers that offer the blended approach just makes a whole lot of sense.”

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City & State New York

New York City’s public hospitals, which form a critical safety net for many low-income residents, are facing a shortage of doctors who work in primary care, the day-to-day physicians with whom patients make first contact, such as those in family practice, pediatrics and internal medicine.

There is no shortage of primary care doctors in the state as a whole, according to a 2018 report from the Center for Health Workforce Studies at the University at Albany. But New York’s doctors are poorly distributed, with almost a third of the state’s population living in a federally designated health professional shortage area – including many in poorer areas of New York City, such as East New York, Brownsville and Washington Heights.

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Pew Trusts

A strong research base finds that dental sealants are highly effective in preventing tooth decay. Sealants can reduce the risk of decay in permanent molars—the teeth most prone to cavities—by 80 percent in the first two years after application and continue to be effective after more than four years.

Yet most low-income children—who are least likely to receive routine dental care—lack sealants. According to the most recent data, 61 percent of low-income 6- to 11-year-olds (6.5 million) lacked sealants.2 A recent study found that if all 6.5 million low-income children who lacked sealants were to receive them, it would prevent 3.4 million cavities over four years.3 With this strong evidence of sealants’ effectiveness, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors, the American Association of Public Health Dentistry, and numerous other health organizations recommend sealant programs in schools, especially as an optimal location to provide low-income children with preventive care.4 Yet a 2015 Pew report found that such programs are in fewer than half of high-need schools in 39 states…

…State practice acts might include requirements that dentists examine children before a hygienist can seal their teeth in school, that dentists be present while a hygienist performs this service, or that private dentists cannot employ hygienists working in schools. They may also include rules that set very low limits on the numbers of school-based hygienists that any one dentist can supervise. In describing dental hygiene scope of practice rules, a 2016 report from the national Oral Health Workforce Research Center stated, “State-based regulatory constraints for dental hygienists may impede access to care as much as the economic and logistical barriers that are known to prevent some patients from obtaining oral health services.”5 In more recent research, the center found that a “more autonomous dental hygienist scope of practice had a positive and significant association with population oral health in both 2001 and 2014.”

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