Chin J Dent Res 18 (2015), No. 1 27. Mar. 2015
The most recent Chinese health care reform, scheduled to run until 2020, has been underway for a number of years. Oral health care has not been explicitly mentioned in the context of this reform. However, oral health is an integral part of general health and the under-servicing of the Chinese population in the area of dental care is particularly high. The article describes how this problem could be addressed. Based on present scientific knowledge,specifically on evidence-based strategies and long-term empirical experience from Western industrialised countries, as well as findings from Chinese pilot studies, the author outlines a preventive oral health care system tailored specifically to the conditions prevailing in China. He describes the background and rationale for a clearly structured, preventive system and summarises the scientific cornerstones on which this concept is founded. The single steps of this model, that are adapted specifically to China, are presented so as to facilitate a critical discussion on the pros and cons of the approach. The author concludes that, by implementing preventive oral care, China could gradually reduce the under-servicing of great parts of the population with dental care that largely avoids dental disease and preserves teeth at a price that is affordable to both public health and patients. This approach would minimise the danger of starting a cycle of re-restorations, owing to outdated treatment methods. The proposal would both fit in well with and add to the current blueprint for Chinese health care reform.
Keywords: early caries diagnostics, minimal invasive treatment, non invasive caries management, preventive dentistry, risk-oriented prevention