Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Dentistry


Pediatric Dentistry

First Advisor

Dr. Tegwyn Brickhouse

Second Advisor

Dr. Julie Coe

Third Advisor

Dr. David Sarrett

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Al Best


Purpose: The purpose of this study is to assess what training and motivational factors dental providers report in providing dental care to PSHCN (patients with special healthcare needs. Materials and Methods: An electronic questionnaire was sent to n=104 fourth year dental students, n=147 general dentists with a specific continuing education course pertaining to PSCHN, and n=140 pediatric dentists in Virginia. The questionnaire consisted of four sections including Demographics, Professional Attitudes, Special Needs Patients and Motivational Factors, and PSCHN Cases. Results: The overall response rate for our study was 21%. The response rates of dental students, general dentists, and pediatric dentists were 30%, 10%, and 25%, respectively. A statistically significant difference was found for 10 out 12 motivational factors. Conclusions: There is a difference in motivational factors among the three different types of dental providers.


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