Incident reporting in dentistry: Clinical supervisor's awareness, practice and perceived barriers.

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The significance of patient safety and risk management in dentistry has surfaced as dental settings bear delicate procedures carried out by teams utilising numerous devices and tools in complex environments.


Our aim is to assess awareness, practice, attitude and perceived barriers of reporting incidents amongst dental clinical supervisors working at dental colleges in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The objectives are as follows: (i) Determine if correlations exist between socio-demographic data and supervisors' awareness, practice, attitude and perceived barriers. (ii) Identify most common perceived barriers.


An online questionnaire was sent to the 450 clinical supervisors working at five dental colleges of Riyadh. The collected data included items assessing the awareness, practice and attitude of reporting students' incidents along with the perceived barriers.


A response rate of (60.1% n = 264 of 450) was established. The majority of the respondents (62.9% n = 166) were aware of the incident reporting policy. Yet, only (35.4% n = 93) of them had completed an incident reporting form before. Most of the participants (90.5% n = 239) agreed on the necessity of reporting student's incidents, but only (67.0% n = 177) agreed on the necessity of reporting well-handled incidents. The possible negative relationship with students was the most agreed on barrier to reporting.


This study shows that certain demographics of supervisors had significant relationship with their awareness, attitude, perceived barriers and practice. Awareness of the policy and form was linked to the increase in supervisors' practice, although they tend to report verbally rather than in writing. The possible negative relationship with students was the most common perceived barrier.

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