Michael Glick, DMD, professor of oral and diagnostic sciences at the University at Buffalo (UB) School of Dental Medicine, recently guided two international initiatives to improve oral healthcare, according to UB.
First, Glick served as co-chair of the working group that developed the FDI World Dental Federation’s Vision 2030: Delivering Optimal Oral Health for All, an interdisciplinary roadmap on how to impact health policies and improve oral health over the next decade.
The report recommends strategies to reduce global oral health inequalities, including adoption of universal oral health coverage, greater collaboration between dentists and other members of the healthcare workforce, and integration of oral health into general health systems to provide person-centered, needs-based care.
“How can we, as members of the oral health community anticipate transformational changes and trends in the global healthcare environment? How do we seize opportunities to become productive members of healthcare teams delivering person-centered care? These are some of the broad questions we strive to answer through Vision 2030,” said Glick.
Along with David Williams, professor of global oral health at Queen Mary University of London, Glick led an international team of oral healthcare providers and researchers in developing the report. Its release coincided with the 148th session of the World Health Organization Executive Board, where an oral health resolution was on the agenda for government adoption.
Oral conditions such as tooth decay, gum disease, tooth loss, and oral cancer are the most widespread noncommunicable diseases worldwide, impacting 3.5 billion people, and have severe and significant health, societal, and economic impacts, according to the FDI World Dental Federation.
Second, Glick led the development of the International Consortium for Health Outcomes Measurement (ICHOM) Adult Oral Health Standard Set, the first international standard for measuring treatment outcomes for oral health in adults over the age of 18.
Published last year in the International Dental Journal, the new standard recommends clinicians measure data related to 17 outcomes to better understand how to improve the lives of their patients. Outcomes are divided into three categories:
- Symptoms: oral pain, sensitivity, and dry mouth
- Caries and periodontal disease: disease staging, complications, and bleeding
- Physiological function and psychological status: self-confidence, smiling, ability to eat, sleep, and speak, and more
According to the report, 87% of adult patients surveyed stated that these outcomes were important to routine care and that they would want their dentists to routinely measure these outcomes.
The Adult Oral Health Standard Set was completed through a collaboration between ICHOM and the FDI World Dental Federation. Glick and Williams co-chaired the working group, which comprised leading dentists, researchers, patient representatives, measurement experts, and economists from eight countries, UB said.