The results of a new survey have supported claims that there is an ‘oral health crisis’ in Australia.
Nearly half of Australians believe their budgets will not stretch to cover the cost basic dental care, according to the study. The results also showed that 23% of people had not seen a dentist in more than two years.
Australian Council of Social Service executive director Andrew Johnson said the survey sent a clear message to decision-makers in the lead-up to the country’s federal election.
‘The stats show there’s over half of million people on waiting lists,’ he was quoted as saying in The Canberra Times. ‘The stats show that 40 per cent of Australians can’t afford dental care.
‘When you ask Australians what needs to happen, they say cost is actually inhibiting their access to get into a free dentist, and they want the Federal Government and the State Government to come together to ensure that they will act.’
The survey, which polled more than 600 people randomly selected from around the country, was commissioned by Australia Fair. This is a campaign supported by the Australian Council of Social Service and other community groups to lobby for a ‘fair go’ in a range of areas such as health, housing and education.