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Increasing access to oral healthcare for marriage-immigrant women in South Korea: programme design to policy recommendation

Cited 5 time in Web of Science Cited 4 time in Scopus

Lee, Hyewon; Seo, Sumin; Kang, Rikyung; Kim, Yonghun; Hyun, Hong-Keun

Issue Date
FDI World Dental Press Ltd.
International Dental Journal, Vol.69 No.5, pp.354-360
Objectives To examine oral health status and access to dental care among marriage-immigrant women (MIW) in South Korea (Korea). Materials and methods We analysed patients' demographic information and access to dental services through the 'Family-Love Dental Program' and compared them with Korean oral health surveillance data. The 'Family-Love Dental Program' resulted from a partnership among the Korean Ministry of the Gender Equality and Family, Seoul National University Dental Hospital, and Cigna Insurance Company (registered as 'LINA' in South Korea) to increase access to oral health for MIW from 2010 to 2016. Results Over the programme duration, 1,944 MIW underwent dental examination and 1598 MIW received dental treatment. More than two-thirds of MIW (69.5%) receiving dental services were aged between 20 and 39 years. In 2016, the proportion of untreated dental caries among MIW was 54.8%, which was significantly higher than that of untreated dental caries among Korean women within the same age group (24.9%). Over the programme duration, 501 MIW (25.8%) underwent final restoration, and advanced care was provided at the Seoul National University Dental Hospital. Conclusion MIW have a significantly higher number of dental caries than Korean women within the same age group. Future programmes and policies should consider specific barriers that will promote oral health parity for MIW and their children.
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  • School of Dentistry
  • Department of Dentistry
Research Area Health Care Sciences & Services, Oral Surgery & Medicine, Public, Environmental & Occupational Health


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