Market Demand for a Bachelor of Science in Dental Therapy

Assessment of Opportunities for Program Development in Vermont

Summary

This report examines the market viability of a Bachelor of Science in dental therapy. To inform the development of a program, the report provides an overview of peer programs, including program structure and reported enrollment trends. The report also details policy trends in the United States regarding dental therapy legislation and the scope of practice for dental therapists in other countries.

Key observations from our research

1. The lack of oral health care in 12 of Vermont's 14 counties suggests a need for dental therapists to provide care for underserved communities.

2. If the state legislature passes legislation to authorize dental therapists to practice in Vermont, develop a bachelor's-level dental therapy program at the member institution to prepare students for employment in the field.

3. Highlight increased patient access and lower wait times as benefits of employing dental therapists to dentists and health clinics to encourage employers to hire dental therapists.

4. Ensure program curriculum instills skills in operative care, pharmacology, and community health to prepare dental therapists to serve the local community.

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