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Scope of Practice

Role of dental hygienist /Scope of practice in Alberta - adpie

Oral health professionals play an important role as primary healthcare providers. We are responsible to screen and monitor patients for underlying medical conditions and provide safe and appropriate dental care in consideration to these complex medical conditions.

As of Nov 2006 the Health Profession Act enabled dental hygienists in Alberta to provide services in an independant setting separate from a traditional dental office. Dental hygiene is a regulated profession governed by the college of Registered Dental Hygienists of Alberta. The college regulates and set forth all professional standards in care; including implementation of infection control requirements to ensure public safety and delivery of effective oral health care.

In Alberta, The Health Professions Act (HPA) and the Dental Hygienist Profession Regulation govern the practice of dental hygiene. Schedule 5 of the HPA states:

“3) In their practice, dental hygienists do one or more of the following: a) Assess, diagnose and treat oral health conditions through the provision of therapeutic, educational and preventative dental hygiene procedures and strategies to promote wellness”

There are 5 elements of the systemic process of dental hygiene care (ADPIE): Assessment, Diagnosis, Planning, Implementation and Evaluation

These processes are required when providing care/ treatment plan tailored to the individual needs of the patient.

Dental Hygienists work collaboratively with other professionals to address dental needs

Assessment of patient’s current disease based on clinical findings; and risk for future disease progression. ; applying this to develop an appropriate and personalized dental treatment plan to manage and serve the patients best interest.

Complete assessment of periodontal health and identify risks of disease. Consult with patients when putting together a treatment plan so they understand the diagnosis and know what needs to be done to reach optimum health.