Dr Kenneth Kais, DDS USA - Comment on  2007-06-25
I cannot speak for the dental curriculum in South Africa, but I would imagine they would tend to mirror the US in content. Our neighbour up North, the University of Washington, requires its Dentistry graduates to have completed 5 arches of removable prosthetics to graduate. At least one arch must be a metal framework partial, one arch a complete denture and, at least one arch of an immediate denture. This means a newly graduating senior could possibly only have seen 3 removal patients during their entire training. The complete course of removable prosthetics, including lectures, runs about 80 hours. This seems about the norm for US Dental Schools. The Denturism graduates at Bates TC are required to complete 10 patients in removable, not arches, so at a minimum, they are completing 2-3 times the clinical cases compared to our dental school. When a Denturist student, who must be a qualified Dental Technician with experience before enrolment, externs in their second year, they may do 5-10 times that of Univ. of Washington. In addition to the clinical cases, Removable Prosthetics covers about 1000-1200 hours of our 2000+ hours of study. I have had very little negative comments about our graduates from local Dentists and in fact, most of them refer their patients to Denturists because they either don't want to be bothered by them and can make much more, cutting crown preps all day, or they realize their patients will be getting a better result from a provider with more experience. It's hard to flat the maths!”  Dr Ken Kais is Senior Denturist program Instructor at Bates Technical College, Tacoma Campus, Washington.