First-ever national dental data released

Up-to-the-minute data is now available on the size and shape of Australia's dental profession, thanks to AHPRA.

The first publicly-available national data on dental practice has been released in the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and National Boards’ first annual report. The release of the 2010-11 annual report of AHPRA and the National Boards gives the first-ever insight into Australia’s 530,115 health practitioners. As well as that, it provides the first national data on notifications involving health practitioners and the actions taken by the various National Boards to protect public safety. A copy of the report is available online here.

The report found that dental practitioners in the Northern Territory, South Australia and Western Australia are more likely to be female, despite the profession having a slightly larger number of male practitioners overall. The ‘typical’ dental practitioner is aged 30-to-34, and practicing in New South Wales.

Chair of the Dental Board of Australia, Dr John Lockwood, said the 2010-11 annual report demonstrated transparent and accountable reporting by AHPRA and the National Boards about their work in regulating and protecting the public.

“The introduction of the National Scheme on July 1 2010 represents an unparalleled reform of health practitioner regulation,” he said. “This annual report provides comprehensive data about the first year of operation of the National Scheme.

“There is now clear evidence that the National Scheme is sound, robust and a great asset for the Australian community.”

Some information that has come out of the report includes: There are 18,319 dental practitioners registered to practice in Australia (comprising hygienists, therapists, prosthetists, dentists and dental specialists); the largest age group was 30-34 years (comprising more than 14 per cent of the profession), followed by 50-54 years and those aged 25-29 years; and 51 per cent of the profession are male (9,329 practitioners).


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