J Korean Acad Oral Health.  2015 Mar;39(1):37-42. 10.11149/jkaoh.2015.39.1.37.

Oral health-related quality of life improvements and satisfaction in South Korea: results from the National Health Insurance Coverage Denture Project for the Elderly

Affiliations
  • 1Graduate School of Public Health, Inje University, Busan, Korea.
  • 2Department of Preventive Medicine, Inje University School of Medicine, Busan, Korea.
  • 3Department of Dental Hygiene, College of Nursing and Healthcare Sciences, Dong-Eui University, Busan, Korea. yamako93@deu.ac.kr

Abstract

OBJECTIVES: In this study, we assessed the effects of the National Health Insurance Coverage Denture Project for the Elderly on the improvement of oral health-related quality of life (QOL) and satisfaction.
METHODS
Individuals aged > or =75 years (n=121) participated in the project at dental clinics or public health centers in Busan City, South Korea. Baseline and post-intervention follow-up surveys (personal interview) were conducted between October 2013 and April 2014.
RESULTS
Significant improvements were demonstrated in all seven Oral Health Impact Profile-14 (OHIP-14) subscales at follow-up. Functional limitation showed the most improvement (2.81 points) followed by physical functionality, physical pain, psychological discomfort, social isolation, mental function, and social function. In addition, participants with no income who were required to pay for their expenses, reported higher satisfaction. The multiple logistic regression analysis showed that the rate of improvement on the OHIP-14 ten score increased in cases where participants who had to pay for their expenses (odds ratio [OR], 2.98; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.16, 7.66) but decreased for patients who received partial dentures (OR, 0.34; 95% CI: 0.13, 0.89), patients who expressed previous satisfaction with denture costs (OR, 0.37; 95% CI: 0.14, 0.97), and patients who had previous denture experience (OR, 0.43; 95% CI: 0.16, 1.12).
CONCLUSIONS
Despite the short period (2 years), the National Health Insurance Coverage Denture Project for the Elderly was able to demonstrate significant improvements in oral health-related QOL. Therefore, the establishment and integration of this project is recommended to maintain and improve the QOL for the rapidly aging population.

Keyword

Elderly; National Health Insurance Coverage Denture Project for the Elderly; OHIP-14
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