Dental Public Health is the branch and specialty of dentistry concerned with the diagnosis, prevention, and control of dental diseases and the promotion of oral health through organized community efforts. Dental Public Health serves the community and the public through research, health promotion, education, and oral healthcare programs.
Canadian Dental Public Health specialists are required to have broad knowledge and skills in the seven domains of Dental Public Health. The domains are:
- Assess community oral health status, needs and resources.
- Diagnose community oral health problems and identify the cause or strength of contributing factors.
- Assess policies, strategies, programs, services and devices that affect oral health and the provision of oral health services.
- Plan activities or programs that would be worthwhile in improving oral health within the given ethical, legal, political, social, demographic, economic and environmental context.
- Manage oral health programs.
- Assemble, synthesize and communicate relevant, accurate and clear information that will enable individuals, families, communities, public and private health organizations and government decision-makers to improve oral health.
- Conduct education on and research into community oral health problems and services in order to assure a diverse and competent public oral health workforce and advancement of the specialty.
The National Dental Specialty Examination (NDSE) in Dental Public Health recognizes competence in the practice of Dental Public Health and is the highest professional achievement for a public health dentist in Canada. Fellows are currently working throughout Canada and internationally in health agencies, dental faculties, governments, and administrative and clinical practices.
The NDSE will test a candidate's knowledge of Dental Public Health principles and public health issues in Canada. Candidates are required to demonstrate competency in all of the domains and will be assessed by completing a written examination, computer-based data analysis, policy analysis, and presentation of a response to an assigned Dental Public Health problem.