Author: Ho, Ka-lok Peter
Title: Dental health services planning : issues in need, demand, and provision of removable denture for Hong Kong elderly
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 1996
Subject: Older people -- Dental care -- China -- Hong Kong
Dental care -- China -- Hong Kong -- Evaluation
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Multi-disciplinary Studies
Pages: xv, 143 leaves ; 30 cm
Language: English
Abstract: Elderly population is growing in size, they need more caring, and an important problem of them is large denture need not served; however limited resources require good reasons to prioritise and bargain. This research aimed to probe into the whole elderly population of Hong Kong on their need and demand of denture and other demographic and social factors in order to hint for future services provision, and it was a descriptive and exploratory study. A qualitative interview was first done in July 1995 on experts and elderly to identify the main domains of enquiry. A questionnaire for telephone interview was structured and ordered, being simple and acceptable for elderly but informative, and was pilot-tested and improved several times before finalised. A telephone interview was conducted in October to December 1995 from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. on a randomly stratified sample by regions of elderly aged 55 or above. 14 interviewers, mostly clerks, were recruited, trained and piloted in August to October 1995. 1 successful access was gained on an average of 8 different dials, but each successful access usually dialled only once, and most non-access was the phone not picked up or not eligible. There were finally 1,072 successful accesses from a total attempt of 8,098. However, for all those accesses gained, nearly all questions were well answered in a few minutes with very few missing or refusal. It was found the potential denture need was 83.5%, functional need by missing extent was 51.9%, functional need by chewing problem was 25.8%, aesthetic need by appearance problem was 16.8%, of which chewing problem and appearance problem only overlapped by 7.9%, and demand rates at market price and zero-price were 6.4% and 15.6% respectively. 69.2% of elderly did not have idea on denture price, 50.2% elderly visited a dentist at least once within 2 years, 46.6% of those visited were introduced by friends or relatives, and 75% of those visited were satisfied with the dentists. The most important value underlying dental services to elderly was found to be the price, and then the words of mouth. It was also observed the old elderly tended to have higher functional need in missing extent and chewing problem. The demand analysis identified old elderly as possible group to provide denture under lower price for maximum number of people or relatively more people than other elderly age groups to come for denture and be benefited. There were no observed correlation in different needs, demand and other factors, except that "location, business hour, and waiting time" and "qualification and words of mouth" were two groups highly correlated themselves, and it seemed no satisfactory demographic or social indicators tested in this study to predict the denture need and demand. This study had succeeded to use telephone interview to identify the special target group and obtain the demand data. It was a revolutionary breakthrough to use a new method of enquiry in dental health services, and was a breakthrough to apply demand concepts for dental health services planning and provision. It documented the method to access, the method for assessing health services demand, the tools for demographic and social factors, and demand analysis for prioritising health services planning and provision. It also suggested many new ideas about denture services alternatives for elderly that could be win-win and could form the starting point for further evaluation by future researches.
Rights: All rights reserved
Access: restricted access

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