Wait times for public dental appointments at Bellarine Community Health (BCH) have been reduced by 75%.
Additional federal government funding provided by Dental Health Services Victoria contributed to the result, BCH said.
Since December last year, BCH has reduced wait times for general public dental treatment from 36 months to nine months, with more than 1,700 patients receiving care during that time.
BCH head of dental services Robyn Bastiaan said the additional short-term funding enabled the clinic to cope with the explosion in wait times that was largely due to Covid restrictions over the past few years. last two years.
“Restricting dental services to ERs only during COVID has had a significant impact on wait times and having this additional funding has allowed us to expedite treatment services for our patients,” he said. she declared.
The reduction in waiting times was achieved through a combination of additional in-house appointments at the BCH and a voucher system allowing patients to access the services of private dental clinics.
BCH has also developed a new approach to oral health education sessions that provides additional support for dental patients.
Group Oral Health Information Sessions with a BCH Oral Health Educator provide patients with the knowledge, skills and resources to expand their understanding of what it takes to improve oral health -dental. Support on how to navigate public and private dental pathways is also part of the sessions.
Ms. Bastiaan said the reactions to these briefings had been overwhelmingly positive.
“Patients initially said they thought they knew how to take care of their teeth, but by the end of the session they were shocked by what they didn’t know,” she said.
To find out more about BCH public and private dental services call 5258 0828 or email [email protected]