Dental and ophthalmic health provision for people with severe mental illness
There is some but rather limited evidence that the dental and ophthalmic care of people with severe mental illness (SMI) is poor. This is partially explained by the stigma of mental illness and the social exclusion faced by this vulnerable population who often lack the skills, confidence and knowledge necessary for health self-management and negotiating healthcare from other professionals. Using linked prescription, hospital admissions, dental, ophthalmic and mortality data, this proposed study will examine disparities in dental and ophthalmic health between adults with SMI compared to the general hospital population.
Specifically, the following research questions will be addressed:
What are the rates of dental registrations, attendances and adverse outcomes/treatments (including decayed, missing, extracted and filled teeth and surfaces) among individuals with SMI compared to those without SMI?
What are the rates of ophthalmic service use and eye conditions/diseases among individuals with SMI compared to those without SMI?
Is all-cause mortality associated with adverse dental and ophthalmic health outcomes and does this vary between those with and without SMI?
Professor Gerard Leavey, Ulster University (ADR Northern Ireland).