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A look at dental clinics around the world

In May of 2013, I graduated from the University of Florida Dental School and accepted a job in Singapore. In order to practice there, I had to complete a stack of paperwork, submit blood samples, wait a month and then complete more paperwork. I didn’t need to take any additional licensing exams and I’ve worked in the country since graduation.

I work 9:30 a.m. – 9 p.m. every day, including weekends. I will work about 2-3 weeks and then I take off 1-2 weeks to travel. In the years since I graduated, I’ve been able to travel to more than 100 countries on 6 continents.

If I see a dental sign while I’m traveling, I usually stop in to check it out. I’ll explain that I’m an American dentist visiting and would be interested in speaking with the dentist and comparing notes. Sometimes I have friends in other countries who invite me to see their offices, but usually I just stop by out of curiosity. Don’t you wonder what dental clinics look like in different countries compared to those in the USA such as this Dentist Citrus Heights based clinic?

Here are some of the dental clinics I’ve visited on my travels:

Gambia

gambia

Gambia is the smallest country in mainland Africa with a population of 1.9 million. There isn’t a dental school in Gambia so the dentist I spoke to went to school for five years in the neighboring country of Senegal. This was a private practice and the dentist owned the clinic. Prices (US dollars): $25 cleaning, $90 molar RCT, $38 for a 2 surface composite filling

Saudi Arabia

saudi arabia

I attended a national dental conference in Saudi Arabia where I met some recent graduates. The dental conference was 50-50% male to female. I asked some of the female dentists about their experiences in the dental field and they felt that all their patients treated them with the same respect they showed male dentists.

Saint Vincent

st vincent

St. Vincent has a population of 100,000 and is only 150 square miles. The dentist I visited was born in St. Vincent but went to dental school in Cuba. He went to dental school for 6 years, but his first year was just to learn Spanish (St. Vincent is English-speaking). There are about 12 dentists on the island and they all attended dental school in different countries, including the U.S., Trinidad and France. Prices: $37 filling, $350 for a crown.

Cambodia

cambodia

I was offered a job at an international clinic in Siem Reip, Cambodia. The clinic was very nice with huge clinical rooms and digital x-rays. I didn’t take the job, but my pay would have been $4000 a month or 40%, whichever is greater. The current dentist working there was from Japan. Prices: $250 PFM crown, $250 RCT, $2500 braces, $2200 implant.

 

Equatorial Guinea

equatorial guinea

The dentist was from Lebanon and had gone to dental school in Lebanon as well. There isn’t a dental school in Equatorial Guinea. He asked me to work there so he could take more time off (again, I didn’t take the job). He had been there 9 yrs. He chose to work in Equatorial Guinea because there were too many dentists in Lebanon.

Colombia

colombia

This was a 5-dentist clinic and each dentist specialized in something. The dentist giving me the tour was the surgeon. Wisdom tooth surgeries would cost around $60.

Chile

chile

I met a Colombian-trained dentist who had opened up three clinics in Chile. He had moved to Chile because they offered the best pay in South America. He said if a dentist did really well, they could make up to $50,000 a year.

Have you ever visited a dental clinic in another country? Tell us about it in the comments section below!

~Dr. Dustin Pfundheller, Florida ’13

Dr. Dustin Pfundheller

Dr. Dustin Pfundheller graduated from the University of Florida Dental School in 2013. Following graduation he moved to Singapore where he accepted a job. He works long days for weeks at a time so he can take off and travel the world. He has visited more than 100 countries on 6 continents.

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16 Comments

  1. Elizabeth says:

    I just read your article and loved the idea of seeing dental offices from all around the world. Im a dentist from Peru, private dental offices look very much like your picture of Gambia. Treatments go at around 100 American Dollars for a RCT, 50 for a tooth extraction and 30 dollars for a filling.
    Thanks for sharing your experience!

    1. Thanks for sharing, Elizabeth!

  2. Pretty amazing, I work in a dental clinic in Mexico and the experience is totally different than in the US. I hope to be able of visiting dental clinics in Asia, that must be awesome.

  3. Greta says:

    I can’t believe you went to Equatorial Guinea! As a pre-dental, I spent 3 months studying abroad in Equatorial Guinea and actually completed an internship in a clinic there! Learning about dentistry in other cultures is an amazing opportunity, so for those of you who have the opportunity to study abroad, make sure to take advantage of what little time you have in another country. Learn more about how and why other people became passionate about dentistry, and what challenges and inspires them. You get to learn about aspects of dentistry that aren’t relevant here in the US, and learn more about yourself in the process!

    1. Mukund says:

      hi, can u share the information regarding the various treatment charges in Equatorial Guinea?
      Thank you.

  4. It’s always great to meet colleagues from abroad and learn about their daily practice in their home countries. I was able to visit the Philippines 5 years ago and their private dental clinics look very similar to Gambia’s as well. And 100 countries in just 3 years? I’m so jealous that I’m going to set a goal of visiting 100 countries before 40. Do layovers count? Lol.

  5. Peter says:

    Thanks for sharing. One of the dental clinic that visited was in India, Dentzz dental. I visited during my trip to India and must say was very surprised with the treatment quality and service as well. Source Link: http://dentzz.co.uk/

  6. It seems you have travelled lot in your field. Feeling pity for African residents not even a single school in Africa for dental study. By the way I would have accepted such amazing offer.

  7. I’ve visited dental clinics in dubai and own a dental clinic in florida as well (boynton beach to be exact: http://drbroggi.com) what I’ve found frankly is in some of these middle eastern nations, dentists are doing a lot better financially then some of the uber competitive markets here in US.

  8. I had a great experience visiting my dentist in Colombia, good prices and nice facility.

  9. Great work you have done thanku for sharing this work

  10. Yasmine Zazi says:

    So interesting!

  11. Jasmine Zazi says:

    ,

  12. Thanks for this blog now I got the rough idea of a dentist in world. Thanks for sharing

  13. I like the advice you give about how proper dental care helps save money. It would also be smart to make sure that use mouthwash once a day to help fight gum disease. Thanks for detailed information.
    Teeth straightening Boise

  14. I enjoyed watching all the dental clinic you visited, thanks for sharing!

    I´m a Dentist from Caracas, Venezuela and we´d love to welcome you over here

    Thanks for sharing your traveling experience

    Be well

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