Pacific Basin Dental Association Additional Information
The association serves as a resource for professional development, oral health advocacy and community enrichment.
Majuro, MH 96960
Ph: 692-625-3355 x 2101
The Pacific Basin Dental Association (PBDA) is a non-profit organization that was formed and chartered on December 15, 2001 in the Republic of Palau. PBDA currently represents the six (6) U.S. territories and associated Pacific Islands Jurisdictions. The main objectives for PBDA are as follows:
- 1. To promote and support regional continuing education and human resource development in oral health, with emphasis on primary care and prevention.
- 2. To promote and support culturally sensitive oral and general health initiatives in the region.
- 3. To strengthen infrastructure of dental programs in the region.
- 4. To develop standards and improve the quality of oral health care in the region.
- 5. Encourage the exchange of information and collaboration between dental and health care professionals, individuals, groups and supporting organizations in the region.
The association formed during the Western Regional Dental Directors/Chiefs Meeting in Palau, which was sponsored by the World Health Organization. PBDA follows the defunct Micronesian Dental Association (MDA), which represented the six Territorial Districts of Micronesia. MDA held its last formal meeting in 1987. Pacific dental directors and chiefs at the MCH Coordinators Conference in Hawaii (1999) and at the Pacific Oral Health Summit in Noumea (2001) voiced the need to revive or establish a new regional dental association to help address some of the critical issues related to oral health in the Pacific. These issues included very high oral disease rates, diminishing workforce in oral health, lack of funding/support for programs and professional isolation.
PBDA has no formal mechanism to fund activities. Regular meetings are held as funding permits. In 2002, PBDA applied on behalf of three jurisdictions (Pohnpei, Palau, American Samoa) and received funding to hold a regional Early Head Start/ Head Start Oral Health Forum. This took place in Pohnpei and stakeholders from MCH, the University of Washington, Hawaii Department of Health, Head Start and dental departments convened to develop strategic plans for Head Start. Following from this, PBDA has been working closely with the University of Washington in trying to secure funding to help support the strategic plans that were developed.
In 2003, PBDA implemented a continuing education project for dental directors/chiefs from the association. This focused on management training and was held at the Palau Area Health Education Center (AHEC) with assistance from the Pacific Islands Health Officers Association (PIHOA) and the University of Washington. One outcome of this project was the establishment of a PBDA video library for oral health. A Human Resource Development (HRD) needs assessment for oral health was also completed as a part of this project.
PBDA recently became an affiliate member to PIHOA and gained representation on the Pacific Association for Clinical Training (PACT) and the Pacific Islands Primary Care Association (PIPCA)