Global Child Dental Fund Harvard School of Dental Medicine Kingâ€™s College London Dental Institute
Supported by Colgate-Palmolive and Henry Schein
SEAL Cambodia SDL-5 Legacy Programme
global child dental fund A partnership programme to provide fissure sealant treatment to 60,000 disadvantaged Cambodian children
Senior Dental Leadership - legacy programmes The development of Senior Dental Leaders (SDL) is the cornerstone of the Global Child Dental Fund’s work. Each year since 2007, King’s College London or the Harvard School of Dental Medicine programme have hosted an SDL programme. So what has been the result – what is the practical outcome? Evaluating the impact of the course on the lives and work of dental leaders is difficult to quantify. Excellent delegate feedback, increased numbers applying to attend and sponsors supporting more delegates each year gives us confidence that we are making a difference. However, in 2010 the charity decided to support two projects to be led by delegates themselves which would embody leadership principles and have a great impact on the oral health of disadvantaged children. SDL-5 was our 2011 programme and a delegate Dr Annie Chen-Green linked up with a delegate from the SDL-2
course to start a “Seal Cambodia” initiative. This then became an SDL-5 legacy project and built on a long term involvement the Global Child Dental Fund had in Cambodia since 2008. Seal Cambodia has become an multi-agency collaboration with support from GCDFund, Cam Kids (The Cambodian Children’s Charity), GC Asia , Colgate Palmolive, the Australia and NZ Society of Pediatric Dentistry, Cambodian Dental Association, Ministry of Health (Cambodia), International University dental school in Phnom Penh and a range of local dental charities and providers.
Programme history It all began with Professor Callum Durward, the Cambodia-based public health leader and executive director of the charitable trust ‘One-2-One Cambodia’. Under his stewardship, One-2-One has successfully run numerous public health programmes that addressed the needs of disadvantaged men, women and children in Cambodia. In early 2008 Professor Bedi invited Callum to attend the GCDFund’s second Senior Dental Leaders conference (SDL2). Here, Callum brought to the attention of Professor Bedi the plight of Cambodia’s underserved children. Tens of thousands of street children and orphans in and around Phnom Penh suﬀer from HIV/Aids. And the country as a whole has one of the highest levels of dental decay in the world. Motivated to make a diﬀerence together, Professor Bedi and Callum began exploring how the GCDFund and One-2-One could collaborate to benefit these children. e new collaboration’s first milestone was achieved when Professor Bedi visited Phnom Penh to launch a Cambodian Taskforce with Callum and the One-2-One medical director Annie Chen-Green. ‘e purpose of the Taskforce’, Professor Bedi commented, ‘was to bring together Cambodia’s national dental health leadership – to pool all the available, resources, motivation, skill-sets and knowledge for the good of the country’. Working collectively, the Taskforce would establish priorities for the national oral health agenda, and take responsibility for initiating improvements in oral
health services in Cambodia.
Professor Durward and Professor Bedi
Professor Bedi signing partnership agreement with the University of Health Sciences
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History continued... In June 2009 the GCDFund also established a working relationship with the Faculty of Dentistry, International University in Phnom Penh. And a year later, One-2 One formally partnered with the GCDFund.
Although hundreds of children were benefitting from the programme, there was widespread acknowledgment that the scope of the work needed to be significantly upscaled in order to deal with the sheer numbers of suﬀering children.
Following months of planning meetings, a new preventative programme, ‘Smiles & Hopes Cambodia’ launched in early 2010. e programme was a national collaboration between the GCDFund and One-2-One Cambodia. Support came from the Cambodian Government and various Cambodian NGO’s, charity’s and healthcare providers. Colgate-Palmolive and Henry Schein were sponsors. e programme addressed the dental and medical needs of vulnerable and destitute children in 115 Phnom Penh primary schools. It did this through three main activities: providing dental and medical care; oral-health training for teachers and community caregivers, distributing preventive oral-health materials.
rough numerous progressive planning meetings between Callum, Annie and Professor Bedi throughout 2010 and 2011, a new course of action was resolved. All agreed that the GCDFund should lead the evolution of the Smiles & Hopes programme into a larger-scale prevention programme. Tests carried out during the previous 3 years had made clear that the most eﬀective way to severe dental caries in children was through the clinical process of applying a special coating of a fluoride-releasing cement onto decaying teeth.
In March 2011, Annie Chen Green attended the fih Senior Dental Leaders conference (SDL-5) in Boston. Here, she updated Professor Bedi on the national situation in general, and the progress of the Smiles & Hopes programme in particular.
In 2012, planning for the new programme progressed well. Colgate-Palmolive and Cam Kids were secured as sponsors, and a number of Cambodian medical providers came on board to implement the treatment work. In November, the Cambodian Government endorsed the programme and the treatments began in earnest. us, the genesis of SEAL Cambodia lay in the evolution of the GCDFund's work in Cambodia. anks to Annie Chen-Green, it was oﬃcially founded as a 'Legacy Programme' of the SDL-5 conference.
2013 progress update Following months of planning last year, finally in November we were delighted to receive permission to get the programme underway! As a last measure before visiting schools to carry out treatments, we ran training days for the clinicians, the aim of which was to maximise clinical capacity. One-2-One then pushed ahead in December, treating all grade 2 children at three schools in Phnom Penh. The January holiday period slowed progress, nevertheless the collective spirit and sense of momentum continued to grow. Treatments began again in the second week of January, aided considerably by a small group of overseas volunteers, to whom we are extremely grateful. By the end of the month, 815 children had sealants applied.
2012 planning meeting
As expected, our capacity to provide treatment built throughout February, with an additional 1205 children receiving treatment. March was a breakthrough month, as we exceeded our monthly target (1666 children) by sealing 2475 children in total. With 4495 children now treated and the programme running smoothly, we are well on course to achieve our year 1 target of treating 20,000 children! In March the GCDFund sponsored the Cambodian ChiefDental Officer – Dr Hak Sithan to attend the SDL-7 programme. This provided an opportunity for Dr Sithan to update us on the Seal Cambodia project and discuss with the charity how the programme could be integrated into government programmes.
Meeting with the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Education. Dr Sithan updates colleagues on his SDL-7 experience, April 2013
Highlights and achievements •
Each of the partner organisations has made a major contribution to the treatment work. One-2-One in particular has sealed the teeth of 3383 children.
We have now worked with children from 35 schools in and around Phnom Penh.
All of the schools visited have cooperated fully and assisted us our work. Teachers have been exceptionally helpful in sending out consent forms to parents.
Adverts have been widely circulated in Australia and NZ to recruit overseas volunteers. Those dentists and students who volunteered in January and february found the experience very positive.
We have had many enquiries from potential volunteers, and expect more assistance from dentists, hygienists, therapists and students in the coming months.
Dr Bethy Turton, a dentist from NZ, joined the programme in February. She is actively involved in several research projects in Cambodia, and has provided valuable input into the project’s research proposal, which will be circulated shortly.
“ Annie Chen-Green Medical Director, One-2-One Cambodia
Dr Sopheap, the research coordinator, has been busy contacting schools and partner organisations, helping them in the field, delivering forms, and offering advice.
To incentivise local participants, we agreed to give certificates to the personnel who carry out the sealants. The certificates range from ‘bronze’ for 120 children sealed up to Platinum for 600.
Setting up a partner programme capable of treating tens of thousands of children required a huge amount of groundwork. Together, we managed to pool the skills and knowledge of the individuals involved, develop roadmaps, invest in training, conduct research and establish protocols. It has been a privilege to work with so many committed and enthusiastic individuals. We hope that Cambodia’s children will benefit from the sealing treatment for decades.
We will update you on progress over the course of the year. In the meantime, if you would like to support SEAL Cambodia, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org Further information can be found at our website: www.gcdfund.org GCDFund, SEAL Cambodia Rooms 329-331, 26-29 Drury Lane, London WC2B 5RL www.gcdfund.org | email@example.com
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