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COVID-19 Pandemic and Its Impact on Pediatric Dentistry in Austria: Knowledge, Perception and Attitude Among Pediatric Dentists in a Cross-Sectional Survey

Authors Bekes K, Ritschl V, Stamm T

Received 15 October 2020

Accepted for publication 8 December 2020

Published 26 January 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 161—169

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/JMDH.S285093

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser


Katrin Bekes,1 Valentin Ritschl,2 Tanja Stamm2

1Department of Pediatric Dentistry, University Clinic of Dentistry, Medical University Vienna, Vienna, Austria; 2Center for Medical Statistics, Informatics, and Intelligent Systems, Medical University of Vienna, Section for Outcomes Research, Vienna, Austria

Correspondence: Katrin Bekes
Department of Pediatric Dentistry, University Clinic of Dentistry, Medical University Vienna, Sensengasse 2a, Vienna 1090, Austria
Tel +43-1-400702801
Fax +43-1-400702809
Email katrin.bekes@meduniwien.ac.at

Introduction: The Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) outbreak is affecting people worldwide. Given the frequent production of aerosols, dentists are a high-risk group for infection. The aim of this study was to assess the knowledge, perception and attitude regarding COVID-19 among pediatric dentists in Austria.
Methods: An online survey was distributed among the 128 pediatric dentists that are members of the Austrian Society of Pediatric Dentistry. The questionnaire was divided into three sections: 1) dentists’ demographic characteristics, 2) general knowledge and attitude, 3) COVID-19 with a focus on pediatric dentistry.
Results: Seventy-five dentists replied; 58 questionnaires could be included in the analysis (93.1% female). Pediatric dentists were found to have good general knowledge of COVID-19. However, only 10% had attended training or lectures and 36.2% rated their role in teaching patients about COVID-19 as being very significant. At the beginning of the outbreak, 78.6% only offered emergency services. Currently, only 10.3% of the dentists work without FFP2/3 mask when producing aerosols.
Discussion: Austrian pediatric dentists were aware of the general aspects of COVID-19. Those, who had their practice open mostly followed national and international recommendations given and only offered emergency visits.

Keywords: COVID-19, pandemic, infection, pediatric dentist, infection control

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