|Year : 2016 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 79
Oral and maxillofacial pathology............. need to evolve?
Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, Ragas Dental College and Hospital, Chennai, India
|Date of Web Publication||16-Dec-2016|
Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, Ragas Dental College and Hospital, Chennai
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
|How to cite this article:|
Ranganathan K. Oral and maxillofacial pathology............. need to evolve?. J Orofac Sci 2016;8:79
Oral health is of paramount importance to holistic health. Emerging research has confirmed its role in pregnancy, heart disease, dermatological conditions, sepsis, and even migraine and Alzheimer's disease.
However, we have a paradoxical situation in health care in India: on one hand, we have data suggesting that there are not enough health-care workers to tackle the burden of disease of our large population…on the other hand, we have health-care professionals being concerned about satisfactory employability.
The specialty of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology (OMFP) is no exception to this paradox. Nationally and internationally, the pressing question is how to make the practice of oral pathology relevant to the current needs. I have had the opportunity to deliberate this issue, with colleagues, during my tenure as the President of the Indian Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathologists, the Asian Councillor of the International Association of Oral Pathology, and the Secretary General of the Asian society of OMFP.
What is clear is we need to evolve as a specialty if we are to be relevant. This should be done by capacity building on the existing responsibilities rather than totally branching into new areas at the expense of core competency. The need of the day is to:
- Integrate: With general dentistry, our colleagues in medicine, and allied branches such as material science
- Network: Research being a core part of OMFP, networking at the national and international level is the need of the hour
- Update: Keeping up with the emerging concepts
- Reach out: To students, to highlight the role of oral pathologists toward health care and dental practice
- Engage: Society and policymakers to highlight what we can contribute toward public health
- Self-assessment: We need to be self-critical and make sure that we are proactive in all the above.
I do realize that there is a lot of concern regarding the future of OMFP. It is important to realize that this is not because of the lack of opportunity to contribute to the specialty. The scope is tremendous and the only constraint is our ability to interact, innovate, hone our existing capabilities, and acquire new skills. Let me sign out with a relevant quote: “The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking – Albert Einstein.”