Survey of Registered Dental Hygienists in California

Mar. 01, 2007

Registered Dental Hygienists (RDHs) play a critical role in efforts to promote access to oral health care and prevent dental diseases. The heightened attention on the nation's oral health needs and growing disparities in oral health, as well as pending revisions in federal procedures for designating dental health professions shortage areas, create a compelling need for better data on the contemporary RDH workforce in California. This presentation provides comprehensive data for policymakers, workforce planners, and health professions educators regarding the RDH workforce in California. The goal of the presentation is to better understand the distribution of these health professionals in the state, the way in which RDHs are deployed in clinical settings, the scope of RDH practice, and the extent of involvement of RDHs in public health and population-oriented prevention activities and in meeting the oral health needs of underserved Californians.