Dental education on antibiotic resistance: a partnership between Norway, Canada, and Brazil
The overuse and misuse of antibiotics has been one of the biggest drivers of the antibiotic resistance crisis. Since dentists are significant contributors to the number of antibiotic prescriptions worldwide, we aim to understand the awareness and perceptions of educators regarding antibiotic resistance and prescriptions practices. As the control of bacterial infections remains a cornerstone for the maintenance of a healthy global population, we aim to reveal target areas for the improvement of dental curricula that could ultimately have a positive impact and lead to the reduction of antibiotics prescribed by dentists.
The World Health Organization has stated that “antibiotic resistance is becoming a public health emergency of yet unknown proportions”. In fact, estimations indicate that antimicrobial resistance (AMR) will be responsible for 10,000,000 deaths every year and a total of about $100 trillion in economic losses by 2050. One of the biggest drivers of resistance is the overuse of antibiotics in humans which takes place at a high rate with outpatients, and to that, dentists contribute significantly with 3.5 to 11.3% of antibiotic prescriptions worldwide. More importantly, a variety of recent studies from multiple countries indicates that dental prescribing practices can be vastly improved.
Aims and methods
In this project, we aim to explore the awareness and perceptions of educators regarding antibiotic resistance and prescriptions practices with qualitative research. To address such aim, the research team will construct a protocol and will conduct in-depth interviews with dental educators, which will then be analyzed and reported for publication in international scientific journals. This project is a collaborative effort between the University of Oslo, the University of Campinas in Brazil, and McGill University in Canada. Thus, interviews will be conducted with educators from these three countries and you will be working together with collaborators and students in Brazil and Canada as well. If possible, the research team will administer the interview in person, however, if necessary due to social distancing measures, web-based meetings will be employed by videoconference.
The project has already been evaluated by the Ethics Committees in Norway, Canada, and Brazil. In addition, the NSD (Norsk Senter for Forskningsdata) has approved the project (reference code 285858).
As a dental student, you will be an essential part in contributing to the construction of the interview protocol, for the administration of the interviews in Norway, and for the analyses of the results. This is an exciting field that has a strong potential to influence the future path of education and that can have a strong impact on antibiotic prescription practices by dentists. With this approach, we fundamentally expect to better understand if the dental education is providing enough emphasis on the topic and which interventions would be beneficial to increase antibiotic resistance understanding, awareness, and stewardship.
You will be part of a research team working with antimicrobial resistance under the main supervision of Associate Professor Roger Junges and co-supervision of Professor Fernanda C. Petersen from the Institute of Oral Biology. Moreover, you will work closely together with Assistant Professor Antonio Pedro Ricomini Filho from the University of Campinas in Brazil, and Professor Belinda F. Nicolau and Alissa Levine from McGill University in Canada. The team has expertise on different fields of microbiology and quantitative/qualitative research methods. This project has been anchored in many years of fruitful collaborations with the University of Campinas and that has been awarded funding from the Norwegian Research Council (NFR) and the Norwegian Agency for International Cooperation and Quality Enhancement in Higher Education (Diku) from 2018 to 2021:
In addition, in April 2021, a new collaborative project entitled ‘Norway-India-Brazil-Canada-USA: Partnership for excellence in education, research and innovation in biofilm and antibiotic resistance’ has been granted funding and will start in September 2021. This is a diverse, exciting, and inclusive research environment that will allow for a successful project development, collaboration, and future opportunities. You will be very welcome in our group!
Roger Junges (hovedveileder) – firstname.lastname@example.org
Fernanda C. Petersen (medveileder) – email@example.com