Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Dentist shortage bites California as more choose to practice out of state

Date:
March 27, 2014
Source:
University of California - Los Angeles
Summary:
A lingering recession, the elimination of Medicaid dental reimbursements and a glut of established dentists in wealthier, populated areas may be why more new dentists are practicing outside California, according to a new policy brief.

A lingering recession, the elimination of Medicaid dental reimbursements and a glut of established dentists in wealthier, populated areas may explain why more new dentists are practicing outside California, according to a new policy brief from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research.

Related Articles


"Good access to dental care depends on having a robust supply of new dentists in California," said Nadereh Pourat, director of research at the center and lead author of the study. "We need a new generation of dentists to replace the many dentists who are close to retirement."

Grass looks greener across state line

While California still saw an increase in the number of dentists and had more licensed dentists -- 35,000 plus -- than any other state in 2012, the number of those licensed to practice in California who opted to reside or work out of state grew 6 percent between 2008 and 2012.

The migration is especially noticeable among new dentists. In 2012, 86 percent of those licensed within the previous five years practiced in the state -- a 10 percent drop from 2008. In addition, new dentists in 2012 made up a smaller share of the state's overall supply. Of all regions, the San Joaquin Valley tallied the highest percentage of new dentists, who made up 15 percent of the local supply.

A noteworthy development: Analysis showed one group -- women -- made up almost half of all newly licensed dentists in California in 2012.

Older dentists nearing retirement, newer dentists more specialized

Age may also start affecting supply. Nearly one-quarter of actively licensed dentists in California have been practicing for 30 years or more and are close to retirement age. Northern and Sierra counties had the highest proportion of dentists nearing retirement, at 40 percent.

The report also suggests that it may become tougher for adults to get basic oral care than gum surgery, as more new dentists are specializing.

Overall, 13 percent of newly licensed and actively practicing dentists in the state identified themselves as specialists in 2012, a 6 percent bump since 2008.

Uneven supply

Patients in the San Joaquin Valley may have the highest share of newly licensed dentists in their area, but they still have the lowest ratio of dentists to patients in the state, with 2.4 dentists for every 5,000 people. In contrast, Greater Bay Area residents have the highest dentist-to-patient ratio -- 5.1 per 5,000, beating the state average of 3.9.

"There is a lopsided distribution of dentists," Pourat said. "They cluster in areas like San Francisco and Southern California, but don't settle in rural and underserved areas. Many areas of the state don't have enough dentists."

The report says that although economic conditions in the state are likely to improve, it is critical to motivate new dentists to practice in underserved areas such as the San Joaquin Valley and the Northern and Sierra counties.

Options such as assistance with dental school loan repayment, small business loans, and higher Medicaid reimbursement rates to provide incentives should be further developed for better effectiveness, the authors note.

Read the brief at: http://healthpolicy.ucla.edu/publications/search/pages/detail.aspx?PubID=1275


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California - Los Angeles. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of California - Los Angeles. "Dentist shortage bites California as more choose to practice out of state." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140327101505.htm>.
University of California - Los Angeles. (2014, March 27). Dentist shortage bites California as more choose to practice out of state. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140327101505.htm
University of California - Los Angeles. "Dentist shortage bites California as more choose to practice out of state." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140327101505.htm (accessed December 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, December 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 22, 2014) Scientists in Amsterdam say couples transfer tens of millions of microbes when they kiss, encouraging healthy exposure to bacteria. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Brain-Dwelling Tapeworm Reveals Genetic Secrets

Brain-Dwelling Tapeworm Reveals Genetic Secrets

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 22, 2014) Cambridge scientists have unravelled the genetic code of a rare tapeworm that lived inside a patient's brain for at least four year. Researchers hope it will present new opportunities to diagnose and treat this invasive parasite. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A touch-free phone developed in Israel enables the mobility-impaired to operate smart phones with just a movement of the head. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) Polish scientists isolate bacteria from earthworm intestines which they say may be used in antibiotics and cancer treatments. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins