YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–The second World Conference of Armenian Dentists started September 22 in Yerevan. The conference is being attended by 225 delegates from the United States–France–Canada–Georgia–Lebanon and Turkey. On the agenda for the conference is the–exhibition of stomatological production–as well as roundtable discussion of further interaction between Armenian and Diasporan dentists. The conference was initiated by the Armenian Health Care Ministry and the Association of Dentists of Armenia through the sponsorship of the "Procter & Gamble" company and the Association of the Armenian Dentists of California.
Welcoming the guests was–Armenia’s Health Minister Hayk Nikoghossian. Nikoghossian said that this question is currently being considered within the context of a call for general health care reform. The great problem–according to him–is to provide stomatological services in villages.
Armenia’s Chief Dentist Karen Lalayan estimated the current state of stomatological services to the population of Armenia. In accordance with his data–in the past 8 years the volume of stomatological services has dropped six-fold: if in 1990 the attendance level was equal to 3,230,000 persons–in 1998 it totaled 534,000. He also drew attention of those present to the absence of proper control over the quality of materials used in stomatology.
Lalayan also stressed the lack of preventive measures.
According to the chairman of the Association of Armenian Dentists–Telemak Ghazarian–the first school program of preventive stomatological measures will soon be introduced in Armenia’s schools through the support of "Procter & Gamble."
The conference will end on September 24.