Dental Hygiene ETDs

Publication Date

Spring 4-13-2020


The state of Florida has proposed the establishment of the dental therapy mid-level provider to alleviate the lack of access to oral health care of the underserved population. Despite the success in other states opposition exists this workforce model. The purpose of this research is to evaluate the attitudes of Florida school-based nurses regarding the development of dental therapists to address the states oral health access issues. A survey queried a random sample of 300 Florida school-based nurses regarding dental therapy and access to oral health care issues among the school age children population. Twenty-three school-based nurses responded (7.8%). Results indicated school location and household income status support the access to oral health care needs of children. Further results indicate that children in rural areas are more likely to have dental decay and lack of access to care. A correlation could not be established due to the limited response rate.

Degree Name

Dental Hygiene

Level of Degree


Department Name

Dental Medicine

First Committee Member (Chair)

Diana B. Aboytes, RDH, MS

Second Committee Member

Christine Nathe, RDH, MS

Third Committee Member

Vicki Pizanis RDH, MS, EdD




Dental Therapist, Access to oral health care, Oral health disparities

Document Type