18 March 2021
World Oral Health Day: Time to prioritise oral health and stop the neglect in aged care
On World Oral Health Day on 20 March, dental health professionals around the world are asking people to be proud of their mouth.
The Australian Dental Association Victorian Branch is calling on the Federal Government to establish a Seniors Dental Benefits Scheme as a matter of urgency, so that older Australians and those living in residential aged care can be proud of their mouth too.
There are more than 220,000 Australians living in residential aged care, and many more living in various in-home care arrangements, who experience great difficulty accessing dental care. The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety highlighted countless stories of neglect, with many residents experiencing pain and discomfort, and an inability to chew their food. Basic oral hygiene care is rarely prioritised, leading to significant oral health problems.