Interprofessional Education in U.S. Dental Hygiene Programs: A National Survey Public Deposited

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  • Furgeson, Danielle
    • Other Affiliation: University of Michigan
  • Kinney, Janet S.
    • Other Affiliation: University of Michigan
  • Gwozdek, Anne E.
    • Other Affiliation: University of Michigan
  • Wilder, Rebecca
    • Affiliation: School of Dentistry, Department of Dental Ecology
  • Inglehart, Marita R.
    • Other Affiliation: University of Michigan
  • Although there are many benefits of interprofessional health care, no previous research has sought to define the status of interprofessional education (IPE) in U.S. dental hygiene programs. The aims of this study were to assess how these programs engage in IPE, the challenges they encounter, and the value they place on IPE. Additionally, the study explored how program characteristics are related to IPE. Data were collected with a web-based survey sent to all 322 U.S. dental hygiene program directors (response rate: 33% of the 305 successfully contacted). The majority of the responding programs were located at institutions with nursing (90%) and other allied health programs (85%). They were likely to collaborate with nursing (50%), other allied health (44%), and dental assisting programs (41%), but were less likely to collaborate with dental schools (28%). IPE was most likely to occur in volunteer activities (68%), basic science courses (65%), and communication training/behavioral science courses (63%/59%). The most frequently reported challenges for IPE were schedule coordination (92%) and curriculum overload (76%). The majority of the respondents agreed that IPE was a priority for the dental hygiene profession in the U.S. (59%) and for the program directors personally (56%). Programs granting bachelor degrees were more likely to have IPE as a priority than programs that did not grant such degrees (scale of 1-5 with 5=most important: 3.81 vs. 2.88; p<0.01). The longer the students spent in the programs, the more those programs engaged in IPE (r=0.21; p<0.05). The data collected in this study can contribute to future efforts to help dental hygiene programs engage in meaningful IPE and contribute to developing interprofessional care in the U.S. health care system.
Date of publication
  • Onescience ID: 50805f459995859d68af1e02365588f7cb111024
Resource type
  • Article
Rights statement
  • In Copyright
Journal title
  • Journal of Dental Education
Journal volume
  • 79
Journal issue
  • 11
Page start
  • 1286
Page end
  • 1294
  • Publisher
  • 0022-0337
  • 1930-7837

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