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Australian nursing educators’ perspectives on education and training to promote older people’s oral health

conference contribution
posted on 2023-05-24, 21:00 authored by Vandana BhagatVandana Bhagat, Thi HoangThi Hoang, Crocombe, L, Lynette GoldbergLynette Goldberg
Background: Given the rapidly growing older population in Australia and their frequently poor oral health, nurses play a leadership role in ensuring effective oral health, associated systemic health and related quality of life for older people.

Aim: To investigate the perspectives of educators in Bachelor of Nursing programs regarding the education and training of nursing students to provide and promote oral health care for older people.

Methodology: Semi-structured interviews (n=13) were conducted with course coordinators and lecturers in accredited Bachelor of Nursing programs (n=10) across Australia. Participants were recruited by purposive sampling. Data were analysed thematically with the assistance of Nvivo12.

Results: Five main themes were identified: (1) importance of nurses’ role in maintaining older people’s oral health, (2) inconsistencies in current oral health care education and training for nursing students, (3) lack of focus on students’ development of competencies to maintain older people’s oral health, (4) segregated oral health care education and service provision system, and (5) the need to create opportunities for interprofessional learning and practice.

Conclusion: Education and training of nursing students to promote older people’s oral health, especially when older people are dependent on others for their oral care, was a significant element in providing the best quality nursing care. Developing curriculum guidelines within learning domains of nursing accreditation standards is suggested to ensure that future nursing graduates acquire essential knowledge and competencies in oral health care to enhance nursing practice and improve the overall health and wellbeing of older people.


Publication title

Journal of Health Science and Development




School of Health Sciences

Event title

3rd Virtual Conference on Nursing Education and Health Care

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  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Rural and remote area health

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