Teledentistry for screening new patient orthodontic referrals. Part 2: GDP perception of the referral system

Br Dent J. 2005 Dec 10;199(11):727-9; discussion 723. doi: 10.1038/sj.bdj.4812969.


Objective: To evaluate GDP opinion about a teledentistry system to screen new patient orthodontic referrals.

Study design: Cross-sectional questionnaire.

Sample: Two hundred general dental practitioners (GDPs) were approached from Stockport, Rochdale, Oldham, Bury and Bolton in Greater Manchester, and High Peak in Derbyshire.

Method: A questionnaire about a teledentistry system for new orthodontic patients was developed, following interviews with eight GDPs participating in a teledentistry trial. The questionnaire was posted to another 200 GDPs who were asked questions on issues such as the efficiency of a teledentistry system; the usefulness of a teledentistry system from the patients' point of view; their view of a teledentistry system; and any concerns they had relating to security, confidentiality and consent.

Results: Seventy one per cent of GDPs thought teledentistry for orthodontic referrals would be a good idea. At least 90% of responders agreed or neither agreed nor disagreed that patients would benefit from such a system. Over half of GDPs agreed or strongly agreed that there would be implications on their surgery time, expense and equipment security.

Conclusions: GDPs generally supported a teledentistry system for new patient orthodontic referrals. Although perceived patient advantages were agreed, GDPs tended to be less sure about the impact on them in terms of set-up expenses, time in the surgery and appropriate remuneration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • General Practice, Dental*
  • Humans
  • Orthodontics*
  • Referral and Consultation / organization & administration*
  • Remote Consultation*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United Kingdom