A landmark partnership between Charles Sturt University (CSU) and Henry Schein Halas (HSH) will ensure that students of the University's new dentistry and oral health courses will gain their dental training experience in a fully digital clinical and preclinical environment that offers the most advanced dental equipment of any education facility in Australia.
The partnership involves the purchase of more than $6.2 million of dental instrumentation and an ongoing relationship between the parties. The University will showcase the state-of-the-art dental equipment at clinics in Orange, Wagga Wagga, Bathurst, Dubbo and Albury-Wodonga.
The clinical setting will include multiple open teaching surgeries, enclosed specialist suites, and dental simulation laboratories. These will be equipped with high quality Planmeca simulation units, digital dental chairs, and X-ray instrumentation sourced from Finland.
The contract for Henry Schein Halas consists of 82 simulation units, 78 Planmeca Compact i dental units and 32 digital Planmeca Intra X-ray units. The equipment is supported by integrated software including Planmeca Romexis Clinic Edition software, which allows remote maintenance and centralised control of dental units.
The CSU School of Dentistry and Health Sciences is a newly created dental education entity, the first in 60 years in the state of New South Wales. The first phase of deliveries will take place during spring of 2009, the second phase towards the end of the year 2009.
Head of the School of Dentistry and Health Sciences, Professor Ward Massey, said "One of the most exciting aspects of the partnership between HSH and the University will be the inclusion of two technological 'Dream Rooms'. These futuristic surgeries are modelled on similar training centres purpose-built in North America for the University of Baltimore.
"The Dream Rooms will allow us to showcase the latest developments in dental equipment to local dentists and our students. Regional dentists considering an upgrade to their surgeries, dental graduates attending our facilities for continuing education and our undergraduate students will be able to use state-of-the-art dental clinical technologies within these surgeries.
"This high-tech instrumentation, which strongly underlies the core curriculum, will be further enhanced by clinical management software, including an electronic dental chart that will manage clinical services to be offered from the dental clinics on the University's campuses. Each clinic will be linked for shared teaching using the University's high speed network, and there are plans to offer regional dental practitioners continuing professional education from these outlets."
CSU was granted over $65 million by the Federal Government last year to mount the new dentistry and oral health programsand dental service across its major campuses. Graduates from the two courses are expected to provide a much needed injection of dentists, oral health therapists and dental hygienists into the region to enhance access to this neglected area of healthcare.