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Title: A multi-country survey on the impact of COVID-19 on dental practice and dentists’ feelings in Latin America
Autores: Moraes, R. R.
Cuevas-Suárez, C. E.
Escalante-Otárola, W. G.
Fernández, M. R.
Dávila‑Sánchez, A.
Grau-Grullón, Patricia
Fernández, E.
López, T. M.
Grazioli, G.
Arana, L. A.
Rondón, L. F.
Torrez, W. B.
Lima, G. S.
Schuch, H. S.
Correa, M. B.
Demarco, F. F.
Researchers (UNIBE): Grau-Grullón, Patricia 
Affiliations: Centro de Investigación en Biomateriales y Odontología (CIBO) 
Research area: Ciencias de la Salud
Keywords: Dental care; Personal protective equipment; COVID-19 testing; Fear; Professional practice
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: BioMed Central Ltd.
Source: BMC Health Services Research, 22(1), 393
Journal: BMC Health Services Research 
Volume: 22
Issue: 1
Start page: 393
Background: The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly influenced the routine of healthcare workers. This study investigated the impact of the pandemic on dental practice and dentists' feelings in Latin America.
Methods: A survey was conducted with dentists from 11 Spanish-speaking Latin American countries in September-December 2020. Professionals were invited by email and via an open campaign promoted on social media. The questions investigated dental care routines, practice changes, and feelings about the pandemic. Descriptive statistics were used to identify frequencies and distributions of variables. Proportions were compared using chi-square tests.
Results: A total of 2127 responses were collected from a sample with diverse demographic, sex, work, and education characteristics. The impact of COVID-19 was considered high/very high by 60% of respondents. The volume of patients assisted weekly was lower compared with the pre-pandemic period (mean reduction = 14 ± 15 patients). A high rate of fear to contracting the COVID-19 at work was observed (85%); 4.9% of participants had a positive COVID-19 test. The main professional challenges faced by respondents were reduction in the number of patients or financial gain (35%), fear of contracting COVID-19 (34%), and burden with or difficulty in purchasing new personal protective equipment (22%). The fear to contracting COVID-19 was influenced by the number of weekly appointments. A positive test by the dentists was associated with their reports of having assisted COVID-19 patients. The most cited feelings about the pandemic were uncertainty, fear, worry, anxiety, and stress. Negative feelings were more prevalent for professionals who did not receive training for COVID-19 preventive measures and those reporting higher levels of fear to contract the disease.
Conclusion: This multi-country survey indicated a high impact of the pandemic on dental care routines in Latin America. A massive prevalence of bad feelings was associated with the pandemic.
DOI: 10.1186/s12913-022-07792-y
Appears in Collections:Publicaciones del CIBO-UNIBE
Publicaciones indexadas en Scopus / Web of Science

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