Oral health

A large proportion of people living in remote and rural Australia do not have access to a regular dental service. Recognising the important link between oral health and overall health, over recent years the RFDS has established oral health services in parts of remote and rural Australia. These services are provided using fly-in fly-out, mobile and outreach deliver models, and funded by state governments, private investments, or the use of donor funds

In 2014-15, the RFDS provided oral health services through 11 different programs in all states and territories (except the ACT) and there were 9,845 episodes of dental care provided.

dental health

The latest RFDS research paper was on the subject of oral health and was published in September 2015. It is entitled "Closing the Gap: disparities in oral health access and outcomes in major cities and remote and rural Australia".

Oral Health

Qld Oral Health

Thanks to a unique partnership with the QCoal Foundation, the RFDS delivers a mobile dental clinic to towns in regional Queensland.

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The WA mobile dental van

WA Dental Services

In keeping with its philosophy to provide health care to those living in rural and remote locations across WA, the RFDS coordinate two dental programs providing services to rural and remote locations, including Wiluna, Warburton, Mingenew, Morawa and Perenjori.

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Dentist in the outback

Oral Health Programs in NSW

Oral health affects overall health. We run dental programs from our bases in Broken Hill and Dubbo. From Dubbo TOOTH (The Outback Oral Treatment and Health) program, takes over 200 dental clinics each year to Bourke, Lightning Ridge, Collarenebri and Goodooga. These communities are some of the most vulnerable in the state with low socio-economic factors combining with lack of dental services to adversely affect oral health. Our service out of Broken Hill also provides extensive oral care.

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Two little girls holding toothbrushes

Mobile Dental Care in VIC

Poor oral health can lead to serious health complications and in some parts of Victoria, it is the second leading cause of preventable hospital admissions. Working with a team of dentists and dental assistants the Flying Doctor Dental Clinic is a purpose built mobile dental van that provides treatment to small rural communities throughout Victoria where distance from a public dental clinic is greater than 50kms.

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child has teeth examined

Oral Health Care Program in SA/NT

Children living in the outback are twice as likely to have a cavity, missing, or filled teeth compared to their city counterparts. The Remote Oral Care Health Program delivers regular dental services and oral health education twice a year to communities without a permanent dentist. Patients receive basic dental treatments and oral hygiene education - services often up to a day's drive away.

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children learning how to brush their teeth

Giving people back their smiles

"You've given me back my smile," was the response of one woman after attending a TOOTH clinic in Bourke recently.

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Learn more about the services that the RFDS provides.