This paper presents a case study on the use of mixed methods in research into practice to inform policy. The study was undertaken as part of a review of oral healthcare for older people in residential and nursing care homes in County Durham, North East England. The findings highlighted challenges in the provision of good quality oral healthcare to older people in residential and nursing care homes and informed the county’s oral health strategy (Durham County Council DCC, 2016). Key recommendations include the need to develop and implement a minimum set of best practice oral health standards within care home contracts and train care home staff in oral healthcare. The paper relates to two key dental public health competencies: (i) designing and using mixed method studies to address gaps in evidence and triangulating the findings from quantitative and qualitative methods; (ii) the development of evidence based policies. The research is relevant to: care home staff; commissioners in local authority adult and social care; public health practitioners; oral health improvement teams; domiciliary and special care dentists, dental commissioners, researchers and academics.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank Dr. Richard Holmes, Senior Lecturer / Honorary Consultant in Dental Public Health and Dr. Sheena Ramsay, Clinical Senior Lecturer at Newcastle University for providing feedback on the manuscript. We also acknowledge the contribution of members of the Oral health strategy group in Durham County Council and all participants who took part in this study. We thank Professor Richard Thompson and the Newcastle University Public Health Small Grant Fund for funding the transcribing of interviews.
© BASCD 2018.
- Mixed methods
- Older people