Press release | 2023-2024 Budget: Dental Care Is Noticeably Absent
Montreal, March 22, 2023 – In reaction to the Quebec government’s 2023-2024 budget that was tabled yesterday by Finance Minister Eric Girard, the Association des chirurgiens dentistes du Québec (ACDQ) would like to highlight the absence of satisfactory measures for improving the state of oral healthcare in Quebec. Despite the brief submitted by the ACDQ to the government, which detailed important issues for dental clinics, the amounts allocated show a marked lack of interest in the practice of dentistry within the province.
“Dental care has a significant economic impact in Quebec, because it generates several billions of dollars in economic spin-offs every year. The ACDQ participated in this year’s pre-budget consultations to present its vision and ideas to the government on the matter of oral health in the interest of contributing to Quebec’s economic and social development and fostering greater access to dental care for the population,” said Dr. Carl Tremblay, President of the ACDQ.
In the brief that it submitted during the pre-budget consultations, the ACDQ proposed constructive strategies to the government for minimizing the effects of the labour shortage on dental clinics and facilitating access to oral health care for all citizens. These are the general proposals that the ACDQ made to the Quebec government:
- Increase and support the supply of dental hygienist training programs to better serve Quebec as a whole;
- Forgive the loans taken out by dentistry and dental hygiene students who choose to practice in rural and remote regions and create incentives for dental hygiene students like the Quebec Perspective scholarship program;
- Set up an oral healthcare pilot project for nursing homes (CHSLDs) and make it permanent;
- Support dental clinics in implementing new infection control measures so that Quebec’s population has access to a stable and lasting dental care network.
“As the greatest health crisis of the last century unfolded over the past few years, dentists rolled up their sleeves and went to work. They had to adapt their clinics and practices while this crisis wreaked havoc on their day-to-day operations, but they still found a way to help out other health professionals by participating in the vaccination efforts. When the essential conditions for their success are in place, dentists are key actors in the overall health of the public. Therefore, given the desire to “reform” the health system, we believe that it is essential for oral healthcare to be one of the government’s priorities,” concluded the ACDQ’s President.
The Association des chirurgiens dentistes du Québec
The Association des chirurgiens dentistes du Québec (ACDQ) is a professional association with a membership of 4,300 dentists, which is mainly made up of general dentists, but also includes public health dentists and pediatric dentists. Its mission is to study, defend and develop the professional, economic, and social interests of its members.
Charles Brière Garneau
Coordinator, Public Affairs and Media Relations
Association des chirurgiens dentistes du Québec
514-282-1425, extension 322