Vilija Berlin, Alina Pūrienė, Monika Mackevičiūtė
In order to improve the performance and efficiency levels of their dental clinics, employers need to start focusing on their dentists’ productivity and effectiveness at work. There are numerous factors influencing dentists’ productivity: the workforce, input prices, dentists’ experience. Up until now, there has been no research done on measuring the productivity levels of general dentists and dental specialists in Lithuania. This research would be useful not only for individuals, who control the supply of general dentists and dental specialists, but also private or public employers of dental clinics. Objective. To analyze the factors that influence the numbers of patients a general dentist and a dental specialist can accept during a 6-hour working day. Materials and methods. A study was carried out among 2008 general dentists and dental specialists in Lithuania during the period 12/2012 and 06/2013. A structured questionnaire was used to identify the productivity of general dentists’ and dental specialists’ and to determine the influencing factors. Statistical analysis was performed using the SPSS software (version 20.0). Results. The average number of patients during a 6-hour working day was roughly the same between the two examined groups: general dentists took on average 8,4± 3,4, while dental specialists took on – 8,5± 5,2 with specialized patients. A statistically significant relationship (p = 0.02) was found between the dentists’ productivity and working with an assistant: dentists, who always work alone, treat fewer patients (7.9 ± 3.3) than those, who work partially with an assistant (8,9 ± 3,7). Moreover, dentists, who work in major Lithuanian cities, treat fewer patients (7.7 ± 3.6) than those, who work in smaller towns (9±3,1). Also, there was a statistically significant relationship (p<0.05) between dentists, who work in public hospitals (10,3±3,5), and dentists, who work in private clinics (7,6±3,3). Conclusions. Even though the average number of patients treated by general dentists and dental specialists is the same, they differ significantly on various other variables, with the two major ones being the presence of an assistant and the geographical location of the clinic.
Keyword(s): productivity of dentists; determinants of dentist productivity.
Full Text: PDF