DentaSeal: A school-based dental sealant efficiency assessment tool to support statewide monitoring and reporting: A field report


Background: The evidence base supports effectiveness of dental sealants for prevention of childhood caries in school-aged children.

Objective: This study describes planning, development, usability testing and outcomes following implementation of DentaSeal, a web-based application designed to accurately track unique student data and generate reports for all Wisconsin school-based sealant placement (SP) programs.

Methods: Application software development was informed by a steering committee of representative stakeholders who were interviewed to inform design and provide feedback for design of DentaSeal during development and evaluation. Software development proceeded based on wireframes developed to build architectural design. Usability testing followed and informed any required adjustments to the application. The DentaSeal prototype was beta tested and fully implemented subsequently in the public health sector.

Results: The DentaSeal application demonstrated capacity to: 1) track unique student SP data and longitudinal encounter history, 2) generate reports and 3) support administrative tracking. In 2019, DentaSeal captured SP data of 47 school-based programs in Wisconsin that sponsored > 7,000 program visits for 184,000 children from 62 counties. Delivery of > 548,000 SP services were catalogued.

Conclusions: For public health initiatives targeting reduction in caries incidence, web-based applications such as DentaSeal represent useful longitudinal tracking tools for cataloguing SP in school-based program participants.

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