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Comparative Study
, 68 (4), 394-401

Dental Examinations for Quality Control: Peer Review Versus Self-Assessment

Comparative Study

Dental Examinations for Quality Control: Peer Review Versus Self-Assessment

P Milgrom et al. Am J Public Health.


This paper reports the dental care norms for restorative dentistry collected from examinations of 1,466 patients in 105 dental offices in Washington State during 1976. These results are part of a larger study, "Assessment of Care and Continuing Dental Education," being conducted by the University of Washington with the endorsement and cooperation of the Washington State Dental Association. Treatments in volunteer offices were evaluated either by colleagues (peer review) or by the practitioner himself (self-assessment). Two hundred twenty-four of 1,196 eligible dentists volunteered for the study. Patients from the practitioners' offices were randomly selected from office files by project staff. The study tests the proposition that, using standardized clinical evaluation procedures and comparable samples of treatment, dentists will be more critical of their own work than that of others. Results suggest a generally high level of care provided by volunteer practitioners and that self-assessments were significantly more critical than peer review.

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