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Medical librarian helps prep oral health papers for landmark Surgeon General’s Report

June 13, 2019

Oral health experts around the country are working to prepare chapters for the forthcoming 2020 Surgeon General’s Report on Oral Health. Two authorities on oral health contributing to the report are from the Department of Oral Health Promotion and Community Outreach at the VCU School of Dentistry. Tegwyn Brickhouse, D.D.S., Ph.D. prepared a section about pediatric programs and Aderonke Akinkugbe, B.D.S., M.P.H., Ph.D., addressed the impact of tobacco products on oral health status and its contribution to oral health disparities.

In preparing their manuscripts, Research and Education Librarian  Erica Brody worked with both Brickhouse and Akinkugbe to conduct comprehensive searches of the oral health literature. Further, Brody assisted with citation management and formatting using Mendeley. Brody commented, “It was a pleasure to work with these two distinguished faculty members on such an important national project. This report has substantial potential to impact the health of all Americans.”

The faculty author Akinkugbe noted, “Erica is fantastic! Despite the short timeline, she conducted an extensive search of the literature related to my topic area, and collated the search results according to topics under different folders in Mendeley. The work she put in at the outset made my task of reviewing the search results less overwhelming.”

The 2020 Surgeon General’s Report on Oral Health is a follow-up to an initial report issued  in 2000 that summarized 50 years of advances in the field into four key themes:

  1. Oral health means much more than healthy teeth
  2. Oral health is integral to general health
  3. Safe and effective disease prevention measures can improve oral health and prevent disease, and
  4. Lifestyle behaviors, such as tobacco use and diet, influence oral and craniofacial health.  

The 2020 report will document advances in oral health since 2000. “The new report will also describe key issues that currently affect oral health, identify challenges and opportunities that have emerged since publication of the first report 20 years ago as well as articulate a vision for the future, and call upon all Americans to take action.”   

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