KARACHI- The Dental Hygienist Association Karachi (DHAK) celebrated and became a part of World Oral Health Day on 20th March 2014 all over Pakistan. A special event was organized at Dr Ishrat ul Ibad Khan Institute of Oral Health Sciences (DIKIOHS). The celebration was organized by Dental News and sponsored by the manufacturers of Shield toothpastes.
The Moderator of this programme Ms. Shaista welcomed the honorable guests and the president of DHAK – Anum Abdullah. The session began with a brief introduction to the association – DHAK, which is striving to improve public health, promote highest standards of dental hygiene education, facilitate advancements in the science of dental hygiene, while also representing and promoting interests of the dental hygienists.
Anum Abdullah stated that; SHIELD and DENTAL NEWS have shown a great commitment for contributing towards Oral health and we are delighted to partner with FDI on World Oral Health Day to support its mission for healthier smiles.
Madiha Shabbir – General Secretary DHAK, said that across the globe, oral disease is a significant public health challenge. Up to 90% of the world’s population will suffer from oral disease in their lifetime, including Caries and periodontal disease. Activities across the globe on World Oral Health Day will draw attention to the burden of oral disease and provide information on simple, preventive steps for maintaining good oral health, including: brushing teeth at least twice daily; regular dental check-ups, etc.
Other objectives of this association include; increasing awareness about the Dental Hygienist’s profession in rural and urban communities, raising fund for healthcare projects, student-loan offers and scholarships. Various Heads of Departments at medical and dental institutions were also invited to give their valuable input on this occasion.
Dr. Zia Abbas – HOD Oral Surgery at DIKIOHS, expressed his delight by saying; “It is a pleasure to have such a diligent association working in DIKIOHS. I wish the DHAK members best of luck for a bright future. We will continue to acknowledge your services for expanding the scope and effectiveness of the health profession. All associations should follow this path of public health and wellbeing”
Dr. Ambrina Qureshi, HoD Community Dentistry, gave suggestions regarding; Construction of a dedicated website and inviting new memberships to help everyone progress. The association can also invite for collaboration and advisory panels to create more effective developmental programmes.”
Syed Murtaza Raza Kazmi stated; “Associations are formed for two reasons; Personal growth or Professional growth. It should operate in a professional manner create nationwide benefits for the professionals.”
Dr. Javeria Ali Khan suggested the creation of; programs for career-growth, professional development, research oriented activities, awareness and education of dental hygienists. Dr. Bilal also advised the participants to remain united and make this association strong as it will not be an easy task to generate developmental finance and dedicating their efforts for strengthening this association.
The enthusiastic forum and the executive council of DHAK collectively decided to expand this Karachi-based association into a nationwide body, thus renaming DHAK (Dental Hygienist Association Karachi) to DHAP (Dental Hygienist Association Pakistan). This will make the association more vital and extend its network and activities towards other cities all over Pakistan.