Is There a Shortage of Dental Hygienists and Assistants in California?: Findings from the 2003 California Dental Survey

Publication Date: December 2005

Publisher: UCLA Center for Health Policy Research

Author(s): Nadereh Pourat; Dylan H. Roby; Roberta Wyn; Marvin Marcus

Research Area: Health

Keywords: dental hygiene; oral health; dental practice

Type: Report

Coverage: California


This report uses data derived from a survey of 13,600 general dentists throughout California and constructs a picture of private dental practice in California; including staffing levels, wage and benefits, patient populations, and experiences in utilizing Allied Dental Health Professionals (ADHP). As it relates specifically to the question of a workforce shortage of ADHP, dentists reported on the length of time to hire these personnel, their perceptions of shortage, and the impact of a shortage on their practice.

In this report, a shortage is examined by identifying delays in hiring dental hygienists and dental assistants, used to define a workforce shortage. The report also details various aspects of experienced shortages by examining geographic distributions where shortages may be more problematic and where efforts to alleviate shortage may be focused.