The profession of dentistry remains committed to the continued advancement of the highest ethical standards among its members and highest quality of oral health care for the public.
The Indian Dental Association (IDA) has prepared this document to highlight the positions, policies and activities of organized dentistry that support the profession’s commitment to provide quality oral health care for the public with access to all who need and desire care.
IDA promotes dentistry by perpetuating the profession’s integrity and ethics, strengthening the patient-doctor relationship and serving as both a source of information and a voice for the profession.
Promoting oral health and providing dental care in a safe environment are the dental profession’s foremost priorities. The profession seeks to serve the public by advocating improved access to care, research and innovation, the development of standards for materials and technology and by providing quality oral health care to all patients.
The profession recognizes that oral health is integral to general health, and that enhancing the quality, availability, affordability and utilization of oral health care benefits the public’s general health and well-being.
The following are just a few examples of the ways in which dentists promote the public welfare:
The dental profession advocates on behalf of the public for access to care, prevention, preservation of the patient/doctor relationship and quality of care. Historically, dentistry has promoted public oral health programs and urged lawmakers to adequately fund oral health care for the underserved, programs for water fluoridation, sealants, child abuse detection and intervention, and education for cessation of smoking and smokeless tobacco use.
Dentistry’s emphasis on other preventive oral health measures, such as sealants, oral cancer screening and education, mouth guards and effective personal oral hygiene practices.
Dentistry works to maintain the integrity of the patient-doctor relationship by promoting patient choice of providers, treatments and other patients’ rights
These activities bring new technology to the profession on behalf of the public, ensuring that the profession continues to deliver efficient, high-quality, affordable dental care.
National, State and local dental organizations continue to develop innovative programs to address the access problems facing underserved populations. These vulnerable populations are often limited by physical disabilities, illness, poverty and other socioeconomic conditions that impede their access to needed care. Emphasis on primary care allows dentists to address a broad range of oral health needs and guide their patients to efficient, cost-effective treatment while maintaining the continuity of care.
Dentistry constantly strives to create and promote innovative programs to make oral health care more accessible to the underserved.
Local dental organizations participate in community and school health programmes to promote awareness of oral health.
Regulatory mechanisms that have evolved over the past 70 years work well to protect the public and promote patient safety. Dentistry’s record of public protection and professional excellence is outstanding. The profession is committed to maintaining the public trust and consumer surveys consistently show that the public has a high level of confidence in the dental profession.
The IDA supports the authority of individual state governments to adopt and enforce rules that regulate the practice of dentistry and enhance the oral health.
Organized dentistry encourages mobility of dentists, participates in ongoing efforts to standardize examination process and to ensure the competence.
The dental profession has taken the lead and has long had processes in place to ensure the professional competence and continued professional development of dentists and to protect the public.
The dental profession continually assesses scope of practice for dentists and dental auxiliaries and makes changes based on new treatments and technology to ensure that the public receives quality care in a safe, cost-effective manner.
The scope of practice for general dentists and dental specialists are defined by the accreditation standards for their respective educational programs.
The IDA, through its accreditation standards set forth by Council on Dental Accreditation, provides guidance to establish policies which guide in making scope of practice decisions for the protection of the public.
The IDA’sComprehensive Policy Statement on Dental Auxiliaries provides guidance regarding delegation of duties, educational requirements, supervision and practice settings for dental assistants, dental hygienists and dental laboratory technicians.
Dentistry is continually striving for better ways to prevent and treat oral diseases and further the understanding of their relationship to general health.
Innovations in oral health research continue to contribute to success in understanding and fighting many other diseases and disorders, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cystic fibrosis, osteoarthritis, Paget’s disease, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, cancers of the mouth and throat, chronic pain and other neurologic disorders and infectious diseases, such as hepatitis and AIDS.
The IDA Seal of Acceptance Program, initiated in 1994, demonstrates the profession’s ongoing commitment to the safety, health and well-being of the public. The Seal Program is a dynamic process based on the highest principles of quality assurance.
The IDA Survey Center serves as a repository for the most extensive national collection of data on dentistry and emerging trends related to the delivery of oral health care. This information supports the profession’s advocacy initiatives and continuing improvements in dental care.
Dentistry is proud of its record of promoting high-quality oral health care and its efforts to protect the public. The profession looks forward to a future of continued progress in its efforts to improve access to care and to enhance the oral health of the public through the provision of state-of-the-art dental services in a safe, comfortable and cost-effective manner.
The IDA continually reviews and updates its strategic plan to ensure that the Association’s policiesand programs meet the needs of the profession and the public and serve as the foundation for ongoing efforts in advocacy, access to care and prevention; public protection and professional competency; research, innovation and standards development; and especially for the provision of quality care to individual patients
Accreditation is a certification process that empowers organizations, institutions, and individual practitioners by imbibing in them nuances of standardization and continual quality improvement. Standardization and continuous quality improvement processes help an institution and an individual practitioner measure and improve performance and outcomes of various regular activities performed.
The accredited organization, service, program, or activity is recognized as having met the defined standards. In other words, it means a certification of competency and credibility. In dentistry, accreditation has special relevance as the institutions, and the professionals commit to meet standards that demonstrate a standardized higher quality of academic and clinical performance.
Accreditation instills confidence amongst dental professionals, owners, managers, staff, funding bodies, and statutory bodies regarding standardized, high-quality performance processes and consistent, high-quality output.
Accreditation is of strategic importance for the professional institutions as well as for the individual professionals from the following perspectives:
Globalization andInternet have changed the landscape of the education field. Keeping in mind the almost free-of-cost availability of world-class theoretical knowledge, accreditation of Dental Education Institutions and individual professional practices is the need of the hour.
The stakeholders (employees, students, patients, society in general, etc.) are more aware of the quality and more educated about various rules/regulations and their rights.
Benefits to Institutions: Accreditation assesses characteristics of an Institution and its programmes against a set of established criteria. Accreditation process quantifies the strengths, weaknesses in the processes adopted by the Institution and provides directions and opportunities for future growth. This leads to widespread recognition and greater appreciation of the brand name of Institutions and motivates the Institutions to strive for more.
Benefits to Dental Professionals: Dental Professionals can be assured that they will receive Continuing education which is a balance between high academic quality and professional relevance and that the needs of the corporate world are well integrated into programmes, activities and processes.
Benefits to Employers: Accreditation assures prospective employers that dental Professionals come from a programme where the content and quality have been evaluated, satisfying established standards.
Benefits to the Public: The public is assured of quality and continuous improvement.
Benefits to Industry and Providers: It signifies identification of quality of Institutional capabilities, skills and knowledge.
Benefits to Parents: Parents are assured that their child is attending a teaching-learning environment as per accepted good practices.
Benefits to Country: Accreditation helps in gaining confidence of stakeholders and in giving a strong message that as a country, our professionals are of international standards and can be very useful in enhancing the global mobility for our manpower.
Accreditation of education is the process by which an oral health educational program is recognized as having met the defined national requirements and standards. In other words, it means a certification of competency, authority, or credibility. The idea is to promote and encourage continual and lifelong education to the dental professionals.
Globalization of dental science has made it essential to understand the technological changes and update clinical skills. Increase in globalization has also manifested by the growing number of migrating dentists and cross-border education providers. This situation accentuates the need to define standards and introduce effective and transparent accreditation systems.
IDA has been planning, conceiving, organizing as well as conducting Accredited Continuing Oral & Dental Education Programs (ACODE) aimed to impart high levels of skills and knowledge.
It helps professional advancement along with earning credit points, which are significant value-additions to the basic qualification.
Advanced Education Programs designed to provide training beyond the level of pre-doctoral education in oral health care, using applied basic and behavioral sciences. The programs are designed to expand the scope and depth of dental professional knowledge and skills to enable them to provide comprehensive oral health care to a wide range of population groups.
Activities for continuing professional development (CPD) are undertaken by dentists to maintain, improve and broaden their knowledge and skills in order to keep their professional expertise up-to-date in line with current developments, and thereby enhance the quality of care provided for patients.
The aim of CPD is to promote changes in the way dentists practice to ensure that Competence is maintained over the years so that safe and effective care of a high standard will always be delivered. Professional Competence: The dental profession has taken the lead and has long had processes in place to ensure the professional competence and continued professional development of dentists and to protect the public. Professional competency; research, innovation and standards development; and especially for the provision of quality care to individual patients.
CODE focuses more on simply updating knowledge& a variety of programs support these efforts, including:
Accreditation of Educational Programs- Dental colleges must adhere to the quality standards set by the Council on Dental Accreditation. The Council on Dental Education evaluate and certify the quality of education in dental and dental-related education programs. Maintaining the quality educational standards helps to ensure quality dental care for the public.
Continuing Education. The profession is exemplary in its pursuit of professional development through lifelong learning.
Lectures, web-based seminars, study clubs, hands-on participation courses and peer-reviewed journals are widely available to assist dentists in keeping their knowledge and skills. To promote quality continuing education, and the profession through its continuing education recognition programs.
Code of Ethics. “The privilege of dentists to be accorded professional status rests primarily in the knowledge, skill and experience with which they serve their patients and society. All dentists, therefore, have the obligation of keeping their knowledge and skill with current technology.
Peer Review Process- The profession has developed and implemented policies and systems for effective peer review that support professional excellence.
Specialty Certification- All recognized dental specialties have certification procedures to promote professional development.
Continued Learning Achievement Programs- Indian Dental Association grants fellowship and mastership awards to dentists to encourage and recognize achievements in continued professional learning.
Dental Practice Parameters- Dentistry’s practice parameters promote quality health care by providing a reference for dentists in their clinical decision-making. These parameters assist the profession in its ongoing responsibility for up-to-date, quality care.
Wellness Programs- On the national, state and local levels, organized dentistry’s wellness programs protect the public and enhance professional competence by supporting dentists’ mental and physical well-being.
Dental Practice Accreditation serves the public by establishing, maintaining and applying standards that ensure the quality and continuous improvement of dental and dental-related education and reflect the evolving practice of dentistry
The standards focus on all aspects of service delivery like patient rights and education, infection control practices, trained and experienced staff, infrastructure, environment safety, processes and controls among many others, statutory & regulatory compliances. The organizations found compliant to the above standards will be given a "MARK OF EXCELLENCE
IDA is proud of its record of promoting high-quality oral health care and its efforts to protect the public. The profession looks forward to a future of continued progress in its efforts to improve access to care and to enhance the oral health of the public through the provision of state-of-the-art dental services in a safe, comfortable and cost-effective manner.
The IDA continually reviews and updates its strategic plan to ensure that the Association’s policies and programs meet the needs of the profession and the public and serve as the foundation for ongoing efforts in advocacy, access to care and prevention; public protection and professional competency; research, innovation and standards development; and especially for the provision of quality care to individual patients
The idea is to promote and encourage continual and lifelong education to the dental professionals regarding process standardization and quality of outcome. These efforts will improve the quality of life of the individual practitioners, their families as well as their employees.
The principal purpose of accreditation of dental practice is to protect the health and safety of the public by ensuring that oral healthcare practitioners remain fit and competent to practice within a defined scope of practice throughout their working lives.
Accreditation ensures standardized high-quality service provided by practitioners and observing the following:
Accreditation reassures practice owners, practice managers, staff, funding bodies, consumers and patients that a dental practice is meeting minimum safety and quality standards as outlined by IDA.
Accreditation demonstrates a dental practice’s dedication to delivering high quality care and safety to their patients.
Accreditation reflects a dental practice’s commitment to continuous quality improvements by developing systems, processes, and policies.These high-quality systems will improve the staff training and working culture of practitioners. It also will assist them in risk management.
The program must ensure that dental professional are able to demonstrate the application ofthe principles of ethical reasoning, ethical decision making and professional responsibility as they pertain to the academic environment, research, patient care, and practice management
The purpose of the NDAB Approved dental practice programme is to guide the performance of clinics to deliver safe, high quality dental health care. These clinics follow the standards and processes developed by NDAB for oral health services.
Patients want to have confidence that the services of the dental clinic are safe and consistent with high quality care.
This will ensure delivery of superior and internationally accepted current treatment modalities; while safeguarding the rights of both, patients, dentists and their staff.
NDAB Approved Clinics will advance leadership and excellence in oral health care via accreditation, thereby enhancing quality of care.
NDAB Standards contains complete set of standards for evaluation of DHSP for grant of accreditation. The standards provide framework for quality of care for patients and quality improvement for DHSP. The standards help to build a quality culture at all level and across all the function of DHSP.