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A Review of the Global Literature on Dental Therapists

April 1, 2012
By W.K. Kellogg Foundation

The Kellogg Foundation's 460-page review of the benefits of dental therapy as demonstrated in more than 50 countries.

Health Care News reported in its November print issue:

Approximately 7,000 dentists would need to start practicing in more than 5,300 communities across the United States to end the current dentist shortage experienced by more than 46 million people, according to figures from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), part of the Department of Health and Human Services. The shortage will grow to 15,600 dentists by 2025, HRSA projects.

To fill the shortage, a dozen states were “actively exploring” authorizing dental therapy to provide preventive and restorative care, traditionally to patients in underserved areas, when most state legislatures adjourned for the year, according to a map updated by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in June 2016.

The profession is currently authorized in Alaska, Maine, Minnesota, Vermont, and one native tribe in Washington State.

More than 50 countries and territories permit dental therapists to treat patients, states A Review of the Global Literature on Dental Therapists, a 2012 Kellogg report.

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