Economic evaluation and its place in dentistry

N Bhorania, G McKenna

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract


Objective: This review intends to examine current research surrounding economic assessment in the delivery of dental care. Economic evaluation is an acknowledged method of analysing dental care systems by means of efficiency, effectiveness, efficacy and availability. Though this is a widely used method in medicine, it is underappreciated in dentistry. As the delivery of health care changes there has been recent demand by the public, the profession, and those funding dental treatment to investigate current practices regarding programs themselves and resource allocation.
Methods: A meta-analysis was conducted regarding health economics. The initial search was carried out using Pubmed, Google Scholar, Science Direct, and The Cochrane Library with search terms “health AND economics AND dentistry”. A secondary search was conducted with the terms “heath care AND dentistry AND”. The third part of the entry was changed to address the aims and included the following terms: “cost benefit analysis”, “efficiency criteria”, “supply & demand”, “cost-effectiveness”, “cost minimisation”, “cost utility”, “resource allocation”, “QALY”, and “delivery and economics”. Limits were applied to all searches to only include papers published in English within the last eight years.
Results: Preliminary results demonstrated a limited number of economic evaluations conducted in dentistry. Those that were carried out were mainly confined to the United Kingdom. Furthermore analysis was mainly restricted to restorative dentistry, followed by orthodontics, and maxillofacial surgery, thereby demonstrating a need for investigation in all fields of dentistry.
Conclusion: Health economics has been overlooked in the past regarding delivery of dental care and resource allocation. Economic appraisal is a crucial part of generating an effective and efficient dental care system. It is becoming increasingly evident that there is a need for economic evaluation in all dental fields.
Original languageEnglish
Article number37
JournalJournal of Dental Research
Issue numberSpec. Iss B
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Event2013 IADR Irish Division Annual Meeting - Cork, Ireland
Duration: 14 Nov 201315 Nov 2013


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