Collaborating for oral health in support of vulnerable older people: Co-production of oral health training in care homes

Rakhee Patel*, Claire Robertson, Jennifer E. Gallagher

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Background In recent years, the value of co-production has become embedded in the social care agenda. Care home residents are at significantly higher risk of dental diseases and often rely on the care team for support. It is therefore vital that staff are trained and confident in delivering evidence based oral care to their clients. Methods Three London care homes co-produced a pilot oral health training programme, informed by in-depth interviews and group discussions. The initiative was evaluated using pre/post-questionnaires of carers and semi-structured interviews of managers and the dental teams. Results Two care homes were available for delivery of the programme, which resulted in training of 64% (n = 87) of care staff. The training programme involved videos and resources and was delivered flexibly with the support of an oral health educator and a dental therapist. There was an improvement in knowledge and self-reported confidence post-training; however, only 54% (n = 45) completed the post-training questionnaire. Conclusions This study suggests that co-production of an oral care training package for care home staff, is possible and welcome, but challenging in this complex and changing environment. Further work is needed to explore the feasibility, sustainability and impact of doing so.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)164-169
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Public Health (United Kingdom)
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019


  • Care homes
  • Co-production
  • Evaluation
  • Older people
  • Oral care
  • Training


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