Oral health change in Iran: Part IV Jumping to dental caries free schools
Introduction. Oral health promotion of elementary school students is a joint program of the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Health and Medical Education which has been adopted by them as an agreement for making a change in oral health in Iran. Within this program, some training, prevention, medical and research actions have been taken and are undergoing for the elementary school students. This paper presents the results of the first three years of the implementation of this program.
Methods. First, an agreement was signed between the two ministries for the promotion of oral and dental health among elementary school students. Then, some executive strategies were selected within this agreement including the promotion of human resource providing prevention services, the improvement of infrastructure by increasing the number mobile dental clinic vehicles and oral health posts at schools with mobile units, the improvement of standards for health centers by providing surgical restoration services and the removal of irreparable teeth, and the insurance coverage of rural areas and townships with less than 20,000 population. The objectives of the program were evaluated at data, process and output levels and the initial results were assessed in terms of the enhancement of students’ awareness and prevention service coverage.
Results: Prevention service coverage reached over 80 percent in the first three years of the program implementation, and the infrastructure has been grown greatly. The short-term effects of the program are evident.
Conclusion. Students oral health program has had great achievements in the improvement of prevention services at school level.