Consultative professional relationship for oral health therapists

Consultative professional relationship between oral health therapists and dentists/dental specialists

The Council envisages a team approach in the delivery of oral health care, with each of the dental team members delivering care within their own unique set of skills, competencies and scope of practice, in collaboration with other team members, to the benefit of the patients’ overall health. 

To practise oral health therapy in New Zealand, an oral health therapist must have a consultative professional relationship with one or more dentist and/or dental specialist.

To support the establishment and continuation of an effective professional relationship, the Council developed a guidance document to explain the role and nature of the consultative professional relationship, and the responsibilities of the practitioners within it. It also provides direction for the oral health therapist and dentist when establishing a consultative professional relationship.

There is no requirement for a written agreement to formalise the consultative professional relationship. However, practitioners may choose to do so.

Oral health therapists declare their compliance to having a consultative professional relationship in their annual practising certificate application form.