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Type: Journal article
Title: Private Dental Care Benefits Non-Indigenous Children More Than Indigenous Children
Author: Nair, R.
Luzzi, L.
Jamieson, L.
Spencer, A.
Hanna, K.
Do, L.
Citation: JDR Clinical & Translational Research, 2020; 5(3):244-253
Publisher: SAGE Publications
Issue Date: 2020
ISSN: 2380-0844
Statement of
R. Nair, L. Luzzi, L. Jamieson, A.J. Spencer, K.M.B. Hanna, and L.G. Do
Abstract: Introduction: Various arrangements for funding health care facilities can have different levels of performance of care provision on different groups of people. Such differential performance of oral care is not previously known concerning Indigenous communities. Objective: This study aimed to assess the effect of visiting a public or private dental care facility on the performance of oral care experienced by Indigenous versus non-Indigenous children in Australia. Methods: Data from the National Child Oral Health Survey were used with a representative sample of children from all the states and territories of Australia. The performance of oral care was measured with the Child Oral Care Performance Assessment Scale (COPAS), which contains 37 items from 9 domains (Effective, Appropriate, Efficient, Responsive, Accessible, Safe, Continuous, Capable, and Sustainable) with a score ranging from 0 to 148. Mixed effects models that accounted for stratum and sampling weights were used for the stratified analyses (Indigenous vs. non-Indigenous) that assessed the effect of public versus private care on the COPAS. Relative excess risk due to interaction was calculated to assess effect modification. Results: Among the Indigenous children, private care was similar to public care (regression coefficient [RC] = −1.27, 95% CI = −9.5 to 6.97), whereas private care was higher than public care among non-Indigenous children (RC = 4.60, 95% CI = 3.67 to 6.18). This trend was similar among the 9 domains of the COPAS as well, except for Effectiveness, which was similar for private and public facilities among non-Indigenous children (RC = −0.03, 95% CI = −0.29 to 0.23). Based on the continuous COPAS score, effect modification was 4.46 (95% CI = 0.11 to 8.82) on the additive scale and 1.06 (1.01, 1.13) on the multiplicative scale. The relative excess risk due to interaction reported an excess chance of 1.17 (95% CI = 0.01 to 0.33), which was consistent with the stratified analyses and effect modification measured with the continuous score. Conclusion: Thus, this study found a higher performance of oral care in private care locations among non- Indigenous children versus Indigenous children. Knowledge Transfer Statement: The findings caution policy makers and other stakeholders that moving oral care from public to private care facilities can increase the inequity faced by Indigenous children in Australia.
Keywords: health equity; health care evaluation; health services; effect modifier; quality of health care; oral health
Rights: © International & American Associations for Dental Research 2019
DOI: 10.1177/2380084419886869
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