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Br Dent J. 2014 Apr;216(7):391-2. doi: 10.1038/sj.bdj.2014.245.

Dentists in the US should be integrated into the hospital team.

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Department of Global Health, Harvard School of Dental Medicine, 188 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, United States.
Department of Paediatric Critical Care, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, 11100 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, OH 441065, United States.
Department of Orthodontics, College of Dentistry - The University of Iowa, 801 Newton Road, Iowa City, IA 52242, United States.


Few dentists play integrated roles within hospital settings and few hospital emergency rooms have dentists. Existing research shows that only 67% of ER visits for dental problems are managed appropriately. Every year Americans die in hospital after being admitted because of dental disease and a recent study found that 20 people died after such hospitalisations in the United States in 2008. Authors of the current correspondence have conducted extensive research on characteristics of emergency room visits and hospitalisations due to various dental conditions using a nationwide dataset for the United States. This opinion article is intended to provoke discussion about the restructuring of hospitals to integrate oral health professionals into the hospital team.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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