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Cpd: Experience And Application

By Expert Author: Abinash Mallick

Authorities recognize the benefit of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in helping to improve a person’s ability to perform his or her job well. An aim of undergoing continuing education and development is for a person to have consistent growth in knowledge and know-how while working. This is particularly important and helpful for a person in this age and time because there is constant possibility of new information and changing beliefs, as well as high competition for a spot in the work place or as a significant member of the community.

The Health Sector is not exempt from the benefits of continuing development programs and activities. In fact, it may be considered as one of the sectors that need it most because with the advancements in technology, evidence based studies and research are easier to come by and this may affect medical beliefs and practices. An example would be, in the field of dentistry, for many centuries past, the standard material used for restoring a tooth was Amalgam, but now, many dental professionals have dropped the use of Amalgam and attest that Resin Composite materials are equal if not even better. Research and debate about this topic is even to this day still ongoing, and it is the responsibility of the dental practitioner to know what is being said so that one may make informed decisions related to one’s clinical practice.

CPD activities and programs are geared towards expanding a practitioner’s abilities and performance, which may inevitably boost one’s career. In the dental profession, there are many learning topics categorized as scientific or clinical subjects. These are the subjects that directly affect a person’s skills, methods, or procedures of providing dental treatment and dental education to the patient. It also involves other health-related subjects and skills training that ensure the safety of patients while in the dental clinic and during a procedure, such as CPR and basic life support and radiographic imaging. For example, imagine a scenario when a patient comes to the clinic asking about all the newest options for teeth whitening and the dental practitioner is only able to answer with a few treatment modalities. Teeth whitening is not a new concept in dentistry, but with the current influx of beauty campaigns, some companies have dipped their feet in the business and began offering “new” whitening products and techniques. The dental practitioner whose knowledge is updated because of experience in CPD will be able to answer questions and properly educate the patient about safe and effective treatment options.

In contrast to scientific or clinical subjects, there is also the non-scientific or non-clinical subject category. In this are subjects that do not directly enhance a dental practitioner’s skills or techniques but contribute positively to the running and maintenance of a dental clinic business. This would include topics on financial management, business advertising and dento-legal responsibilities. For example, a dental practitioner who initially joined an established practice wants now to separate and put up a solo practice. There are continuing education courses that this person may take in order to learn about how to start and run a business and the ethical issues attached to any decisions made. The course of action chosen becomes the application of the guidelines learned from such non-clinical topics of CPD.

Dental CPD is the process by which oral health care workers grow in their knowledge and skill throughout their working life and building a career. It is a system of gaining experiences from actual clinical work and from further education courses and then applying what was learned in order to become the best possible dental practitioner one can be.

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