The Singapore Dental Association (SDA) has found that 89 per cent of Singapore residents are concerned about the cost of dental care in Singapore, in a recent public survey.

The survey, which was commissioned in August 2019, was designed to to study the confidence of the public in dentists, the public’s concern on dental costs and also to gauge the public confidence of practicing dentists in Singapore in relation to safety and performance.

A total of 1438 members of the public aged between 25 to 60 years old, consisting of 1412 Singaporeans and 26 Permanent Residents were interviewed as part of the survey. The survey found that:

• 76% of the respondents were concerned about the rising cost of living in Singapore.

• 89% of respondents were concerned about the cost of dental care in Singapore

• None of the respondents who had seen a dentist over the last one year had filed any complaints against their dentists

• All respondents who had visited a dentist at least once in the last year said their dentists are competent with their work.

• 71% of the respondents visit private dental practitioners whilst 29% of the respondents visit public healthcare with some voicing concern about the long waiting periods for healthcare in the public institutions.

• Of the 89% of respondents who were concerned about cost of dental care, one third of them said they would try to seek alternative routes of receiving dental care e.g. heading to Johor Bahru or Bangkok for treatment if there is further increases in the cost of dental treatment. Some added that they may turn to public healthcare institutions.

• 17% of the respondents have not visited their dentists for the past three years

The SDA said that the survey was commissioned “in response to a recent series of media articles on dentists who have been convicted by the court or disciplined by Singapore Dental Council (SDC), which might put the dental profession as a whole in bad light.”

SDA Standing Committee Chairman Dr Tang Kok Weng said: “The public survey gave us an opportunity to get a glimpse into the thoughts of Singaporeans and permanent residents.”

“We are glad to find out that despite the media reports on dentists recently, the survey reveals a very high confidence level in our dentists with regard to safety and competency in the delivery of dental care.”

He added: “We share the public concern about the rising dental treatment fees. We hope that there is no external factors in the near future that may potentially increase the cost of delivery of dental care in Singapore.”

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