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20 March 2023

Professor Jenny Gallagher to speak at WHO Global Oral Health Status Report Launch

Dean for International Affairs will present on Oral Health Workforce Shortage in WHO Africa Regions (AFR).

Jenny Gallagher-04

Professor Jenny Gallagher MBE will speak at an upcoming WHO Global Oral Health Report webinar. The event, taking place on 21 March, will launch the African Regional Summary.

There is at present a critical oral health workforce shortage – such as dentists, therapists, and technicians - in the WHO African Region (AFR) compared with the rest of the world. Given predicted population growth, this is likely to get worse without urgent action, and the consequences of oral and dental disease are particularly acute in the AFR. This is further impacted in the region by marked inequalities in workforce education and distribution. 

At the launch, Professor Gallagher will highlight possible solutions based on the research findings and in line with the Global Oral Health Action Plan for 2030, including the importance of strengthened oral health policy and data informed planning together with financial, educational, governance, skill mix action, including workforce incentives to work in underserved areas.

Challenges of this magnitude bring opportunities for global partnership working, and there is great potential to develop innovative models of care which further utilise the workforce skill mix and community health personnel.

Professor Jenny Gallagher MBE, Dean for International Affairs at Faculty of Dentistry, Oral & Craniofacial Sciences

Professor Gallagher will take part in the launch on March 21, which can be accessed here.

More information on this issue has been highlighted in the recent paper, ‘Oral HealthWorkforce in Africa: A Scarce Resource’, which was conducted with the World Health Organization as part of a larger project which informed the Global Strategy for Oral Health and Baseline evidence.

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Ambassador, International, Engagement & Service King’s College London