Awareness of medical emergencies and preparedness of undergraduate clinical dental students in a tertiary institution in Nigeria
Keywords:Medical emergencies, awareness, preparedness, Clinical dental students
Background: Medical emergency can be described as an unwanted, unexpected reaction or complication which usually requires
immediate attention or intervention. Aim: This study aims to assess awareness and preparedness for medical emergencies amongst
undergraduate clinical dental students at the University of Benin, Nigeria.
Materials and Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study involving all clinical dental students in the School of Dentistry,
University of Benin. The questionnaire was divided into three main sections: Socio-demographic characteristics of the respondents; Selfassessed medical emergency preparedness among the respondents; Self-evaluation of knowledge of specific medical procedures about medical emergencies.
Results: The age of the respondents ranged from 19 to 31 years, with a mean age of 24.49 ± 3.1 years. A higher proportion of the
respondents were male (47; 72.3%). Seventy-two percent of students adequately assessed the patient’s medical history, but only 40.0%
regularly used medical Pro-forma to obtain the patients' health history. About 41.5% of the students had poor knowledge about medical emergencies, while 43.1% had adequate knowledge. Only 15.4% of the students had good knowledge.
Conclusion : The study showed that only 15.4% of the students had good knowledge of handling medical emergencies, although
69.2% of the dental students specified good emergency preparedness. The findings point to a deficiency in the dental students’ curriculum regarding medical emergencies, which makes them inadequately prepared to handle them. This emphasizes the need for a review of clinical dental students’ curricula to introduce the management of medical emergencies.