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This subject, which covers the entire fifth year curriculum, encompasses a wide variety of clinical teaching, in rural and urban locations. During the year, students treat patients in general practice clinics and rotate through specialist teaching. Students are not expected to perform treatment during specialist practice.
General Practice Rotation: All aspects of dentistry for adults including Operative Dentistry, Fixed and Removable Prosthodontics, Endodontics, Periodontics, Preventive Dentistry and Oral Surgery and Medicine; clinical treatment as needed by patients, with the emphasis on whole patient treatment' and continuing care on a rotational basis at the Royal Dental Hospital of Melbourne (RDHM) clinics and community clinics. Referral of patients to oral health students.
Specialist Practice Rotation: Specialist clinics at the RDHM, seminars and postgraduate student clinical sessions in the areas of Oral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Prosthodontics, Endodontics, Periodontics, Special Needs Dentistry, Radiology and Paediatric Dentistry. An Orthodontic course associated with Paediatric Dentistry follows treatment in progress. Attendance at: external clinics for experience not available at the RDHM, such as complex radiology; Oral Surgery departments for consulting clinics and operating theatre experience; and emergency departments and medical teams for experience of seriously ill patients.
Academic Teaching/Study Module: Lectures, workshops and other teaching in areas such as Treatment Planning, Dental Ethics and Jurisprudence.
Advanced Dental Study 2: Continuation of the background research and literature review of a research project (commenced in Semester 2 of fourth year) and an oral presentation of that project in Semester 2.
Elective Study: There is time available during the year for students to undertake elective studies which can include interstate and/or overseas visits.
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of this subject, students should:
- The nature, pathogenesis and management of diseases and disorders affecting oral tissues, including the oral manifestations of systemic diseases, oro-facial pain, periodontal diseases, malocclusion and dental caries;
- The behavioural and management aspects of patients including people with disabilities;
- The effect of sedative and anaesthetic drugs on the normal physiology of a patient and the management of patients in theatre and recovery room;
- Complicated psychological or social histories, problems of anxiety, pain control or physical handicaps, and of the homebound, hospitalised and institutionalised;
- The central role of detailed diagnosis and treatment planning in the successful management of individual patients;
- The role of a professional in contemporary Australian society;
- The importance of a preventive and minimal intervention approach to the treatment of routine dental disorders;
- The relevance of basic sciences to the care of patients and the necessity for continued research and education to improve all aspects of dental care;
- The philosophy of total oral health care for each patient and the interactions of general dental practice with speciality care in the overall treatment plan for the individual;
- The biological, behavioural and ethical principles of clinical dental services and their application to total oral health care for each patient;
Comprehend the diversity of:
- settings in which general dental practice may be delivered;
- clinical techniques and dental materials available to meet each individual's specific oral health needs; and
- the limitations of particular treatment modalities.
Have developed skills in:
- assessing the appropriateness for referral and/or additional consultation
- assessing the dental health needs of individuals presenting from a wide variety of socio-cultural backgrounds with a wide range of oral conditions
- evaluating success and failure in clinical dentistry; and
- the examination, diagnosis, radiography, radiology, treatment planning and management of an individual seeking routine dental health care;
- working as part of a comprehensive health team.
Have developed the ability to:
- synthesise information collected and plan appropriate treatment and management of a dental patient;
- communicate about clinical cases with other health providers;
- communicate with patients about their oral health status, treatment options and potential outcomes and to establish and maintain appropriate oral health regimens;
- work within a dental team; and
- assess and manage a patient who has collapsed.
- Sufficient technical skill to provide a comprehensive range of clinical dental services.
- Competency and expertise in providing general dental care to an individual;
- A commitment to ethical practices, quality assurance in dentistry, and life-long continuing education.
- The diversity of people within the community and the responsibilities and problems in delivering dental care to them;
- The necessity for accurate examination, diagnosis and treatment planning before commencing the care of all patients whether or not they have advanced or complicated problems;
- The value of ensuring the maintenance of oral health after treatment of all patients including those with advanced or complicated problems;
- The life-long necessity for continuing education and quality assurance in dental care;
- The need for referral in those situations which cannot be successfully managed in general dental practice or require specialist advice or intervention;
- The role and responsibilities of the general dental practitioner in the provision of comprehensive total patient care;
- Issues of safety in general dental practice; and
- The need for constant evaluation of techniques, peer review of processes, and the application of scientific rigour and principles to the resolution of clinical problems.
On completion of this subject, students should have developed the following skills:
- Problem solving and decision making skills;
- Communication and interpersonal skills;
- Experience in program design and implementation;
- Evaluation and advocacy;
- Planning and time management skills;
- Capacity and motivation for continuing independent learning;
- Appreciation of, and sensitivity to, cultural diversity;
- Leadership skills; and
- Respect for intellectual integrity and scientific truth.
Last updated: 12 November 2022