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The Ministry of Health, in conjunction with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development, will undertake a national ???Oral Health Survey’ of Barbadian school children in the six, 12 and 15-year age groups.

According to Senior Dental Officer, Dr. Fannye Thompson, the survey is designed "to collect information about the oral health status and treatment needs of our population and monitor the effectiveness of oral care services".??

She further explained that the Health Ministry would be focusing on such major oral problems as dental caries, decay, and periodontal (gum) disease.??She added that the three age groups were chosen by the World Health Organisation and PAHO.?? It is expected that results would be compared with those from other countries.

The findings will be used by the Ministry of Health to plan for improvements in the delivery of oral health care services, as well as for the development of oral health education programmes for children and the general public.

Consent forms have been distributed island-wide and parents and guardians are asked to ensure that they are completed and returned to the respective schools. ??The Ministry of Health has advised that the participation of all the schools who received the forms is necessary for the success of this project.

The survey is scheduled to begin on November 7, and will last for two weeks.


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