Maximize Staff Skills and Knowledge

To deliver high-quality oral health services, SBHCs must have a competent staff working at the top of their professions. In SBHCs where skills and knowledge are maximized, no single individual possesses the skills and knowledge needed to provide all care. Rather, staff members work together to provide the best possible care for all students.

In SBHCs that operate effectively, all staff are considered equally important. Professional autonomy is maintained, and incentives are provided to meet performance and efficiency standards. Staff roles and responsibilities are clearly identified to ensure that students are transitioned smoothly from one type of care to another. Shared protocols based on evidence, such as best-practice guidelines, clinical care pathways, and decision-making tools, are essential to help standardize care across services.

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Action Steps

  • Promote a culture of teamwork between disciplines.
  • Provide continuing education and training to all SBHC staff.
  • Ensure that all SBHC staff perform their duties efficiently and cost-effectively.
  • Ensure that all SBHC staff provide culturally competent and developmentally appropriate care.

Highlights from the SBCOHS Grant Program

  • Health Research, Inc./New York State Department of Health (NY) incorporated "dental minutes" and "health minutes" into every staff meeting.
  • Integrated Health Services, Inc. (CT) and University of Colorado Denver (CO) used more traditional educational strategies that included in-services and continuing education (CE) programs.
  • Bassett Healthcare Network's (NY) interdisciplinary training proved so successful that SBHC staff met with two communities to convince them to reconsider removing fluoride from their water supplies.

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