During the past 25 years, there has been significant technological advancement in the pediatric industry. But it’s important to ask whether the supply of pediatric specialists will exceed demand in the near future or vice versa? The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry states that they’re expecting a 60% increase in the number of pediatric specialists in the US by the next decade.
The president of AAPD is in favor of increasing the supply of pediatric specialists in the country. Since they deal with delicate cases involving children, most of the population will be able to get the specialized healthcare services they need.
Increase in Supply
The increase in the number of pediatric specialists will make oral healthcare more accessible and offer more chances to prevent dental disease. The AAPD reports show that the number of pediatric specialists in the US has almost doubled from 2001 to 2018, with 8,033 dentists.
Better Oral Hygiene for Low-Income Families
The higher the number of pediatric specialists, the lower the barriers to access high-quality oral care. A large population is still deprived of oral health needs. If the barriers are lowered, there’ll be a high demand for pediatric dentists.
More than half of the child population visits a dentist for the first time in their life. Meaning far too many do not receive the care they need. Unprivileged children struggle with dental diseases because they can’t get the treatment they need.
A continuous effort is required to change health policies and lower barriers to oral hygiene. This will not only benefit the ones who can afford a visit to the dentist but also children who are in dire need of dental treatment but can’t afford it.
Increase in the Use of Oral Healthcare Services
A study by JADA (The Journal of the American Dental Association) offers strategies that can increase the importance of oral hygiene among children.
The strategies include variations in Medicaid policy that’ll impact the quality and number of dental benefits for children, provide support for pediatric specialists, increase the volume of referrals by general dentists NJ and pediatric specialists, provide education for adults on pediatric dentistry, and narrow all disparities among the population regarding oral hygiene.
Establishment of Pediatricians in Rural Areas
Research suggests that the supply of pediatric specialists varies largely with geographical areas. The gap between supply and demand for pediatricians is the widest in rural areas.
However, the gap can be bridged by providing pediatric care in areas where they need oral health care services for children is the highest.
The introduction of loan repayment assistance programs gave rise to more pediatric specialists in areas where there is a shortage of professional oral health services.