I had the pleasure of meeting Naeema Al Bulushi, RDH, BSc, who graduated from University of Bridgeport Fones School of Dental Hygiene. Naeema works as a head of Dental Assistant Department in Oman, while studying for her MSDH at the Fones School. She is currently involved in teaching in Oman and worked as a student teacher in the U.S. Naeema enjoys working with students and making their life easy for them, mainly with instrumentation. She conducted tutorial sessions for instrumentation and dental radiology at Fones School.
After being exposed to the U.S. environment, Naeema realized that they are far behind with the dental hygiene profession in Oman. After making contact with the ADHA, she realized that no matter where they are, in which corner in the world they are located, dental hygienists must be recognized as oral health professionals. We need to educate and create awareness in our communities about dental hygiene, and our role in prevention. Naeema conducted research as part of her master’s degree program and identified the need for a professional dental hygiene program in Oman.
I had the opportunity to inform Naeema about the International Federation of Dental Hygienists (IFDH). She is looking forward to learn more about the IFDH and ADHA, and how she can start an association for dental hygienists in Oman. She is working with a team in establishing the first curriculum in dental hygiene and hopes to establish the program in Oman in Sept 2012.
Naeema had a meeting with all the Omani dental hygienists on June 30, 2011, and it was a very successful meeting. She formed a task force to determine concerns or challenges faced by the dental hygienists in Oman. The head of the oral and dental health portion at the Ministry of Health is very supportive and he attended the meeting. Naeema discussed many issues, and one of them is becoming a member of the IFDH!
There was much interest, and I will assist them with the proper forms and documents. They will work through the Ministry of Health. In addition, Naeema designed a questionnaire and it has been sent to the dental hygienists to see their progress in the area of competencies in terms of clinical skills. Based on the feedback, they will be conducting a workshop in October or November of this year. I look forward to hearing of their progress, and working closely with them. They are a little closer to their dream coming true!
Maria Perno Goldie, RDH, MS
To read previous RDH eVillage FOCUS introductions by Editorial Director Maria Perno Goldie, go to introductions.