Sarah Murray, dental hygienist and dental therapist and long-time member of the British Society of Dental Hygiene and Therapy (BSDHT), has been awarded an MBE for services to oral health in the 2017 New Year’s Honours list.
Sarah was nominated for the honour by her fellow BSDHT members for the dedication she has shown throughout her career to making a difference to peoples’ oral health and the continued progression of her profession.
Speaking on her honour, Sarah said: ‘It is a huge honour to receive recognition for being passionate about my profession and it is this, that I have strived to grow throughout my career.
‘Dental hygiene and dental therapy has advanced significantly over the years and I am proud to have been a small part of this.
‘There are many inspirational colleagues that I have been fortunate to have worked with, and together we have driven projects forwards, to change lives, both in dental education and for improving oral care within our clinical environments.’
Sarah is currently senior lecturer, head of centre and programme lead in the Institute of Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) – Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry; she also a senior lecturer at the University of Essex, and works collaboratively across both universities.
In her nomination, BSDHT members highlighted her commitment to furthering her profession throughout her 27 years as a member.
Her continued commitment to furthering the profession can be demonstrated in many ways, one of which is the development of the BSc (Hons) Oral Health Science at University of Essex, using an innovative model. Registered dental hygienists are supported in continuing their education in primary care, leading to registration as a dental therapist, ensuring a career pathway and utilisation of dental therapists’ skills in primary care. Additionally, she has been instrumental in developing the team-working and social responsibility aspects in the dental undergraduate programmes at Queen Mary.
As a BSDHT member, Sarah has been involved at a regional level for many years, undertaking a number of roles within the regional group, in addition to being a long-serving council member, and more recently serving on both the education panel and research group.
President of the BSDHT Helen Minnery was quick to offer her congratulations to Sarah for her well-deserved honour: ‘I have had the honour of knowing and working with Sarah for the past five years while on council and exec and believe she is an incredibly worthy recipient of her MBE.
‘Sarah is the very embodiment of a BSDHT member: hardworking, knowledgeable, conscientious and dedicated to making a difference to peoples’ oral health and to the profession.
‘I hope other members take inspiration from Sarah and see what can be achieved within our wonderful profession.’