Document Type : Original Article


1 alth Dentistry, S.C.B Dental College and Hospital, Cuttack, Odisha, India

2 Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, S.C.B Dental College and Hospital, Cuttack, Odisha, India


BACKGROUND: Dentists are often overlooked resources in the workforce for disaster
management (DM). To determine the knowledge, attitudes, willingness, and self‑perceived
effectiveness to participate in DM among general dental practitioners (GDPs) of Eastern India.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A web‑based online survey was conducted among 256 Dental Council
of India registered GDPs of Cuttack district, Odisha. The 45‑item survey comprised closed‑ended
questions on the demographic data of the participants, years of practice, previous experience in DM,
and willingness to participate. Other domains assessed were the participants’ objective knowledge
of DM, attitude, and self‑perceived effectiveness toward participation during disasters. Data were
analyzed descriptively, and the Chi‑square and Mann–Whitney U tests were used for statistical
analysis, with a significance threshold of P < 0.05.
RESULT: A total of 154 responses were analyzed, giving a response rate of 60.16%. The average
age was ≤35 years, 59.1% were BDS dentists and 78.6% had less than 10 years of practice. Only
18% of them had previous experience with DM, and merely 3.2% were formerly trained; however,
95.5% of the dentists were willing to participate in DM. The mean DM knowledge and attitude scores
were 16.12 (CI = 15.4–16.8) and 5.79 (5.45–6.13), respectively. Knowledge and attitude showed
a significant correlation. About 56% indicated that they would be able to respond effectively to a
disastrous event. Significant associations were observed between age group (P = 0.008), years
of clinical practice (P = 0.001), qualification (P = 0.012), previous participation (P = 0.029), and
self‑perceived effectiveness.
CONCLUSION: The knowledge regarding DM among respondents was at an average level. However,
the majority of them were found to have a positive attitude toward participation in DM. Thus, including
DM in dental curricula and drills for dental professionals might prove beneficial as almost all GDPs
were showing greater self‑perceived effectiveness and willingness to participate in disasters.


1. RandolphR, Chacko S, Morsch G. Disaster medicine: Public health
threats associated with disasters. FP Essent 2019;487:11‑6.
2. Government of India. Disaster management in India‑A status
report. Ministry of Home Affairs, National Disaster Management
Division, New Delhi, 2004.
3. Rajesh G, Binnal A, Pai MBH, Vijayendranath Nayak S, Shenoy R,
Rao A. Insights into disaster management scenario among
various health‑care students in India: A multi‑institutional,
multi‑professional study. Indian J Community Med 2020;45:220‑4.
4. Marrone P. Chambers, RT. Economics of natural disasters in
Odisha. Etica e Polit 2013;15:583‑605.
5. Colvard MD, Lampiris LM, Cordell GA, James J, Guay A, Lee M,
et al. The dental emergency responder: Expanding the scope of
dental practice. J Am Dent Assoc 2006;137:468‑73.
6. Rekow ED. The dental team: A ready reserve or an overlooked
resource? J Am Dent Assoc 2006;137:432‑4.
7. Katz AR, Nekorchuk DM, Holck PS, Hendrickson LA, Imrie AA,
Effler PV. Dentists’ preparedness for responding to bioterrorism:
A survey of Hawaii dentists. J Am Dent Assoc 2006;137:461‑7.
8. Psoter WJ, Park PJ, Boylan RJ, Morse DE, Glotzer DL. National
emergency response programs for dental health care professionals.
J Am Dent Assoc 2008;139:1067‑73.
9. Naiman M, Karl Larsen A, Valentin PR. The role of the dentist at
crime scenes. Dent Clin North Am 2007;51:837‑56.
10. Hagen JC, Parota B, Tsagalis M. TOPOFF 2 and the inclusion of
dental professionals into federal exercise design and execution.
Dent Clin North Am 2007;51:827‑35.
11. Mosca NG. Engaging the dental workforce in disaster mitigation
to improve recovery and response. Dent Clin North Am
12. Pittayapat P, Jacobs R, De Valck E, Vandermeulen D, Willems G.
Forensic odontology in the disaster victim identification process.
J Forensic Odontostomatol 2012;30:1‑12.
13. Guay AH. Dentistry’s response to bioterrorism: A report of a
consensus workshop. J Am Dent Assoc 2002;133:1181‑7.
14. Dutta SR, Singh P, Passi D, Varghese D, Sharma S. The role of
dentistry in disaster management and victim identification: An
overview of challenges in Indo‑Nepal Scenario. J Maxillofac Oral
Surg 2016;15:442‑8.
15. Almutairi AF, Alkhtheri BA, Aleidan HN, Alhabib AA,
Alotaibi EA, Salam M. Examining the perceived versus the actual
knowledge about forensic odontology: A cross‑sectional survey
among dentists. Clin Exp Dent Res 2018;4:297‑304.
16. Forrest A. Forensic odontology in DVI: Current practice and recent
advances. Forensic Sci Res 2019;4:316‑30.
17. Hinchliffe J. Forensic odontology, part 2. Major disasters. Br Dent
J 2011;210:269‑74.
18. Gambhir R, Kapoor D, Singh G, Singh G, Setia S. Disaster
management: Role of dental professionals. Int J Med Sci Public
Heal 2013;2:424.
19. Guay AH. The role dentists can play in mass casualty and disaster
events. Dent Clin North Am 2007;51:767‑78.
20. Dental Council of India, Government of India. New Delhi: Dental
Council of India; 2021. Available from: http://www.dciindia.
org. [Last accessed on 2021 Dec 12].
21. Chhabra KG, Rajesh G, Chhabra C, Binnal A, Sharma A, PachoriY.
Disaster management and general dental practitioners in India:
An overlooked resource. Prehosp Disaster Med 2015;30:569‑73.
22. Pandita V, Basavaraj P, Singla A, Gupta R, Kaur R, Vashishtha V,
et al. Recasting disaster recovery strategy at dental workplace
in combating crisis‑A questionnaire study. J Clin Diagn Res
23. Rajesh G, Binnal A, Pai MBH, Nayak V, Shenoy R, Rao A. General
dental practitioners as potential responders to disaster scenario
in a highly disaster‑prone area: An explorative study. J Contemp
Dent Pract 2017;18:1144‑52.
24. Government of India. Standard Operating Procedure For
Responding To Natural Disasters. Ministry Of Home Affairs
Disaster Management Division, New Delhi, 2010.
25. Odissa. Odisha State Disaster Management Authority. OSDMA;
2021. Available from:‑us/
osdma_overview/ [Last accessed on 2021 May 06].
26. Dillman DA, Smyth JD, Christian LM. Internet, Mail, and
Mixed‑Mode Surveys. The Tailored Design Method. 3rd ed.
Hoboken, New Jersey: Wiley; 2009.
27. Rico A, Sanders CA, Broughton AS, Andrews M, Bader FA,
Maples DL. CDC’s Emergency management program activities
— Worldwide, 2013‑2018. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep
28. O’Neill PA. The ABC’s of disaster response. Scand J Surg
29. Glotzer DL, Rinchiuso A, Rekow ED, Triola MM, Psoter WJ. The
medical reserve corps. An opportunity for dentists to serve. N Y
State Dent J 2006;72:60‑1.
30. Odai ED, Azodo CC, Chhabra KG. Disaster management:
Knowledge, attitude, behavior, willingness, and preparedness
among Nigerian dentists. Prehosp Disaster Med 2019;34:132‑6.
31. Mohanty VR, Rao RG, Gupta AK, Reddy VK, Rijhwani K,
Amin F. Integration of dental health professionals in disaster
management‑commitment to action‑New Delhi declaration‑2020.
Prehosp Disaster Med 2022;37:290‑1.
32. Chhabra KG, Rajesh GR, Shetty PJ, Prasad KVV, Chhabra C,
Muddapur M. Disaster management among dental graduates in
a private dental institution in India: A pilot study. Disaster Med
Public Health Prep 2014;8:37‑43.
33. Rajesh G, Pai MBH, Shenoy R, Priya H. Willingness to participate
in disaster management among Indian dental graduates. Prehosp
Disaster Med 2012;27:439‑44.
34. Rajesh G, Chhabra KG, Shetty PJ, Prasad K V., Javali SB.
A survey on disaster management among postgraduate students
in a private dental institution in India. Am J Disaster Med
35. Wang L, Wei JH, He LS, Cao M, Cao J, Liu YP, et al. Dentists’ role
in treating facial injuries sustained in the 2008 earthquake in China
how dental professionals can contribute to emergency response.
J Am Dent Assoc 2009;140:543‑9.