Friday, January 12, 2007

Skills Shortage

Dental appointments require considerable advance notice.

A small piece of tooth broke off yesterday.

The denist used by Mine Host has closed his practice.

Phone calls to other dentists (up to 400km distant) were as thus:

(This is on the 11th of January)

"... certainly sir, our first availalbe appointment slot is in September, which dentist do you normally see?"
"Er... I used to visit Dr. Dedication, but he has closed his practice"
"Oh I see, you are not a patient of ours, I'm sorry we don't take new patients, goodbye"

This conversation could have taken place any time in the past few years.

In the case of a dental emergency, a dentist will usually see a patient within 3 weeks.

Is Australia badly short of dentists? Or are they all laying around near Bondi Beach & the Gold Coast, bleating that there is a "shortage" of patients?

The correct answer is a bit of both. Before he closed, Dr. Dedication answered Mine Host's query as to why, when he was booked out 7 or 8 months in advance, & working all the hours he could, didn't he hire a dentist or two to help him?

He answered that he had grown tired of advertising, had even been offering an equal share of the practice to graduates, ("I can't offer any more than that") and that the other dental practices in town had been doing the same.

What few respondees there were, upon discovering the location of the practice, terminated enquiries immediately, without even enquiring how much it would be possible to earn.


Achmad Sudarsono said...


There's a fantastic, low-tech, non-invasive treatment available. It's readily available to all, doesn't require a trip to the dentist, but does require some dilligence and care.

It's called cleaning your teeth.

Basic oral higene is an excellent way to avoid those expensive trips to the Dentist. In your case, it'd be good to start with basic brushing, then work your way up to flossing as well. Gotta remember to floss.

Maybe that's what the Dentists are trying to tell you.

Increase da Peace
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Ellie @ Kitchen Wench said...

Goodness! I hope that it really didn't take you too long to get that sorted!

As for dentists, I'm fairly sure that we have a decent chunk of them down here in Melbourne. Not sure what it is about my particular area but I have about 5 different dental surgeries, all within 5 minutes drive of my home. Reading your tales really drives home how different life can be depending on where you live in this grand country :)