Digital technology and service improvements to dental care
Service improvements and digital enhancements at our dental clinics have improved access and the quality of public dental care.
Vulnerable people have access to improved oral health services thanks to the implementation of digital x-ray and service improvements.
Metro North Oral Health Services Operational Director Sarah Asmussen said the implementation of digital technology and service improvements had made a difference to vulnerable groups in Metro North.
“We have been working with Queensland Health’s Biomedical Technical Services to install digital x-ray technology and capability across our community-based and school clinics,” Ms Asmussen said.
“As part of the initial rollout, 14 oral health clinics and four dental vans now have digital x-ray capability and equipment which provides faster results improving both the staff and patient experience.
“The introduction of digital technology has enabled teams to have access to digital x-rays taken by Metro North Oral Health Services at any clinic at any time.
“Additional digital x-ray capability will also be rolled out across mobile school dental vans and the Woodford Correctional Centre shortly.”
The introduction of digital technology has been heavily reliant on the expansion of the broader 4G network and availability across our catchment area.
Metro North Oral Health has also made seen improved access to oral health care for vulnerable groups in our community.
“A major focus has been the streamlining of patient appointments for our vulnerable populations which has increased our daily appointment potential by 250 across the service,” Ms Asmussen said.
Metro North is the largest providers of public oral health services in Queensland, delivering services at our dedicated facilities, hospitals, community outreach clinics and schools to eligible adults, adolescents and children at around 40 sites.
Ms Asmussen said we also focussed on offering comprehensive service internally which resulted in over 12,000 patients who would have been previously issued dental vouchers to private providers receiving care in our oral health clinics.
In addition, oral health teams significantly changed their processes and procedures during the initial COVID response to continue to deliver emergency care safely to their eligible population even when level 3 restrictions limited access to all dental services in early 2020.