Evaluation of Dental Program for Older Adults Living in Long-Term Care Facilities

2021-10-06 Dentistry

Introduction: Compared to the general population, older adults living in long-term care facilities have poorer oral health. Also, they seldom have access to dental care services. Given that, a dental health program was initiated by Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Mangalore (MCODSM), to deliver dental care to the residents of St. Antony Home (SAH), a long-term care facility in Mangalore, India. This study aimed to evaluate the dental program by investigating the views and recommendations toward the program through its stakeholders. Methodology: The stakeholders were divided into three groups: Group 1, transport personnel; Group 2, coordinator and administrators of the program from both the sites; and Group 3, the residents of SAH who received dental care at the MCODSM. Data were collected through a structured questionnaire to measure satisfaction levels of the participants. Data analyses included calculating the frequencies required to describe the evaluation outcomes narrative. Results: A total of 19 stakeholders participated in the study, of them 12 were SAH residents (Group 3). These Group 3 participants received various kinds of dental care. Almost all stakeholders were satisfied with the program and reported that the program was beneficial to the SAH residents. The stakeholders of the program were satisfied with transportation, the time allotted for the treatment, and the attitude of the dentists who delivered the program. Conclusion: The dental program was successful in delivering the most needed dental care to SAH residents. It provided an opportunity to provide treatment to SAH residents, and the stakeholders were highly satisfied with the program. That said, there are opportunities to improve the program, especially in relation to transporting the SAH residents to the program site, having a single window to deliver the dental treatment, and acquiring more supporting staff. Future evaluations are warranted using well-designed evaluation procedures and larger samples. Keywords: dental program, long-term care facility, older adults