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Br Dent J. 2002 Sep 14;193(5):253-5.

Disability part 2: access to dental services for disabled people. A questionnaire survey of dental practices in Merseyside.

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North Liverpool Primary Care Trust.


This article aims to identify how accessible general dental practitioners thought that their services were and to identify the barriers they face in providing care for disabled people. A postal questionnaire survey was undertaken of all general dental practices in the Liverpool, Sefton, St Helens and Knowsley Health Authorities. Only one quarter of practices described themselves as having full physical access for disabled patients. However, despite this, over 90% of practices reported treating disabled patients and most were willing to treat more disabled patients. Dentists identified physical barriers, lack of time and the lack of domiciliary equipment as the main barriers to providing care for disabled people. Although dentists were willing to treat disabled patients few dental practices were accessible at the time of the survey. Further work is needed to ensure that dental practices comply with the Disability Discrimination Act.

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