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Jamaica pioneers PAHO int'l oral health programme

Published:Friday | March 23, 2012 | 12:00 AM

JAMAICA WAS the first country to use the Integrated Oral Disease Prevention and Management (IODPM) modules for primary health workers, developed by the Regional Oral Health Programme at the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO).

This was revealed by PAHO/World Health Organisation representative Margareta Skold as she addressed the opening session of the 15th annual Dental Auxiliaries Conference at Breezes resort in Runaway Bay, St Ann last week.

Skold said the modules are an innovative tool to assist primary health workers in the promotion of oral health, prevention of oral diseases, and outpatient management of oral diseases at the community level.

According to Skold: "The modules have been tailored to the specific oral health needs of three population groups: six months to five years, six to 12 years and 13 to 18 years. We congratulate Jamaica on being the first country to use the modules."

Addressing approximately 150 dental health workers at the conference, Skold said providing efficient, equitable, good-quality services and enabling the population to access them, is one of the principal functions of health systems.

Skold said PAHO/WHO is committed to supporting the Ministry of Health in implementing an integrated and evidence-based approach to improving oral health.

- Carl Gilchrist