Kathmandu, February 4
Education Minister Dhaniram Paudel said the government has not been able to send dentists to all districts despite necessity. Many patients have to get treatment from dental health assistants due to this.
Minister Paudel attended a discussion programme organised by the Nepal Dental Science Association and Nepal Dental Hygienist Association today.
Dr Manoj Humagain, general secretary of the Nepal Dental Association, said the NDSA and NDHA must work with the NDA to ensure quality service to the public.
Dr Humagain said the course curriculum for DHAs must be focused and specific and include the code of ethics so DHAs are aware of their duties. He said, “The government must understand the human resource needs in the dental health department and ensure that the course studied by DHAs addresses those needs.”
The NDSA and NDHA accused the government of trying to suppress them by closing dental clinics run by DHAs.
Amrit Bhusal, vice-president of the NDHA, said people from rural areas still go to shamans for treatment, and it was important to first increase awareness of the risks of bad dental hygiene among the rural public before sending dentists there.
Bhusal also pointed out the issue of the reluctance of dental surgeons in going to rural areas for work, forcing DHAs to fill their shoes. “The ministry must first work to address these issues before cancelling the medical licenses of DHAs who run dental clinics without dentists in rural areas. The DHAs are trying to do the best they can in places where there are no dentists,” he said.
A version of this article appears in print on February 05, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.