Sixteen Graduated from one-year Dental Assistant Programme.

GEORGETOWN, MOPH – Principal Dental Officer Dr Kester Sullivan wants more Guyanese youths pursue careers in dentistry to strengthen the national programme especially targeting the school-age population to provide maintenance and training programs on good oral health practices.

Some of the graduates with two dental officials.

“My advice to young persons interested in being in the field is to visit the (May 30 – June 02) HealthExpo which will show them a variety of areas of dentistry that they can venture into, and also give them a greater appreciation of the field” Sullivan stated.

Dr. Sullivan made the call during Friday’s graduation ceremony of the third batch of Dental Assistants (DAs) who successfully completed the one-year programme at the Cheddi Jagan Dental School in the capital.

The students were drawn from Barima/Waini (Region One); Essequibo Islands/West Demerara (Region Three); Demerara/Mahaica (Region Four); (Mahaica/Berbice (Region Five); Cuyuni/Mazaruni (Region Seven); Potaro/Siparuni (Region Eight); Upper Takutu/Upper Essequibo (Region Nine) and Upper Demerara/Upper Berbice (Region Ten).

The 16 DAs were coursed in a variety of specialised areas in dentistry including training in sterilisation, patient care, ethics & communication, anatomy, oral health promotion and care of equipment among other areas.

Sullivan justified the programme explaining that the training creates linkages that enable professional execution of their jobs.

Dr Kester Sullivan.

“When the Dental Assistants are being trained, they are aware of the types of treatment being issued and are also knowledgeable in that regard so as to effectively assist in getting the job done”, Sullivan said.

He said that as part of their duties the DAs are expected to prepare the work sites as well ensuring equipment are ready for procedures.

There are plans to introduce a Dentex course for future trainees, Sullivan said, explaining that “hopefully” this will be available when the next batch of 35 commences their training in the last quarter this year.

Potaro/Siparuni resident, Jeslyn Blenman, who copped the Best Graduating Student prize challenged her colleagues to “make a difference” in their profession and serve their country with excellence.

“The course had its high and low points, but I’m thankful to the lectures who were very patient and took the time to slow it down in the classroom to ensuring everyone understood what was being taught”, Blenman reflected.

“We the graduating class are grateful for the hard work and effort throughout the programme,” Blenman said singling out Drs. Sullivan and Debra Patterson, the Coordinator of the training programme.

The one-year training revolutionised the thinking of Kenecia Bacchus who noted that the course “has changed my perspective positively on the world of work and the dentistry field.”

Most Improved Student Vikram Jacob.

Best Graduating Student Ms Jeslyn Blenman.