Factors associated with the reduction of dental care in Primary Health Care in Brazil after the emergence of COVID-19: a cross-sectional study, 2020

Júlia Freire Danigno Mariana Silveira Echeverria Thais Freitas Formozo Tillmann Bruna Vettorazzi Liskoski Manuela Gonçalves de Souza e Silva Silveira Matheus dos Santos Fernandez Nathalia Ribeiro Jorge da Silva Mariane Baltassare Laroque Alexandre Emidio Ribeiro Silva About the authors

Abstract

Objective:

To analyze factors associated with the reduction of dental care in Primary Health Care, during the COVID-19 pandemic in Brazil.

Methods:

This was a cross-sectional study conducted with dentists in primary healthcare centers (PHCCs). The reduction of dental care was the outcome, and the exposure variables were sociodemographic data, availability of personal protective equipment (PPE) and measures adopted by PHCCs during the pandemic. Poisson regression was performed to determine the prevalence ratio and 95% confidence interval (95%CI).

Results:

Of the total of 958 participants, 62.6% reported a reduction of over 50% in dental visits after the beginning of the pandemic. Adoption of biosafety protocols (PR = 1.04; 95%CI 1.01;1.07), availability of PPE recommended by new protocols (PR = 0.94; 95%CI 0.89;0.99) and adoption of tele-screening (PR = 0.90; 95%CI 0.85;0.96) were associated with the reduction.

Conclusion:

The availability of new types of PPE and implementation of tele-screening in PHCCs seem to have minimized the reduction of dental care after the beginning of the pandemic.

Keywords:
Oral Health Care Services; Primary Health Care; COVID-19; Personal Protective Equipment; Cross-Sectional Studies

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