An appraisal of the oral health care system in Nigeria

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Adeniyi, AA
Sofola, OO
Kalliecharan, RV
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FDI World Dental Federation
Objectives: This study aimed to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the oral health care system in Nigeria and to outline broad policy options for strengthening the system. Methods: A critical appraisal of the oral health care system in Nigeria was conducted. The Maxwell criteria were used to assess performance. Results: There has been some progress and growth in the oral health care system in Nigeria. However, it is clear that the system falls short on many desirable attributes. The system is neither effective nor efficient and the resources available are grossly inadequate and are overstretched in many areas. The oral health care system is unresponsive to the needs of the populace and there is little stewardship of the system. Conclusions: Urgent action in the Nigerian oral health care system is required on the part of all stakeholders. The first step should involve the provision of adequate resources for the immediate implementation of the national oral health policy. There is also a need for more research on oral health-related issues in the country. Efforts towards improving the system must be properly coordinated by the Federal Ministry of Health and involve all stakeholders in the sector in order to achieve success.
Oral health system, Nigeria