Currently in Western Australia (WA) there is no requirement for dentists to participate in continuing professional development (CPD). The aim of this study was to determine the participation pattern of dentists in WA in CPD activities. Data was collated regarding registrants for courses conducted by the University Continuing Dental Education Committee. Information concerned number of courses attended by each dentist, location of work and year of graduation from university. Details of subject, length and type of courses conducted were also gathered. Most courses were half to one day in duration with many subjects covered. Between 10.1-24.4% of dentists registered in WA attended at least one course each year. Low numbers of recently graduated and older dentists attended courses. Similar percentages of metropolitan and rural dentists attended courses. Participation in CPD activities of dentists in WA was low. Half day or evening courses appear to be favoured by dentists.
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This study was supported by a Vacation Research Grant from the University Continuing Dental Education Committee. Staff of University Extension at The University of Western Australia generously assisted the authors by supplying de-identified data for analysis.
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