Why is this HEAT target important?
This target reflects one aspect of the contribution NHSScotland is making towards improving Scottish children's oral health. It is complemented by a variety of preventive programmes involving both general dental practitioners and the community as a whole. Dental registrations are an indication of how accessible dental care is to pre-school children and therefore their ability to access preventive care in general dental practice as the programmes develop.
Fluoride varnishing aims to increase the number of children who are decay free at age 5 years, particularly addressing inequalities. Dental decay is almost totally preventable but is the single most common reason to admit children to hospital in Scotland and accounts for significant pain and discomfort to the child and causes absence from school.
How are we performing?
Target due for delivery by March 2014
Child Fluoride Varnish
The target is to achieve at least 60 per cent of 3 and 4 year old children in each Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD) quintile to receive at least two applications of fluoride varnish (FV) per year by March 2014.
Target performance is measured through recording whether all children who were 3-years old one year ago had two varnishings in the intervening 12 months, and whether all children who were 4-years old one year ago had two varnishings in the intervening 12 months. The performance of the worst-performing age and SIMD quintile combination is to be 60 per cent by March 2014. Thus, if the performance of the worst-performing age/quintile combination is above 60 per cent then the performance in every other age/SIMD quintile combination must be above 60 per cent and the target will have been reached.
For the year ending March 2012, the worst-performing age/quintile combination at the national level was 6.1 per cent (i.e. 6.1 per cent of 3 or 4-year olds got at least 2 applications of fluoride varnish for the year ending March 2012).
The table below shows the worst-performing age/quintile combination for the year ending March 2012, by NHS Board.
| NHS Board || Year ending March 2012 |
| NHS AYRSHIRE & ARRAN || 8.3 |
| NHS BORDERS || 2.4 |
| NHS DUMFRIES & GALLOWAY || 4.4 |
| NHS FIFE || 1.8 |
| NHS FORTH VALLEY || 1.8 |
| NHS GRAMPIAN || 2.8 |
| NHS GREATER GLASGOW & CLYDE || 3.9 |
| NHS HIGHLAND || 5.9 |
| NHS LANARKSHIRE || 4.7 |
| NHS LOTHIAN || 1.2 |
| NHS ORKNEY || 22.6 |
| NHS SHETLAND || 23.9 |
| NHS TAYSIDE || 4.5 |
| NHS WESTERN ISLES || 0.0 |
| NHSSCOTLAND || 6.1 |
Related National Outcomes