Addressing Oral Health Inequity and Unmet Dental Care Needs among Aged Care Residents

Project opportunity

This Earmarked Scholarship project is aligned with a recently awarded Category 1 research grant. It offers you the opportunity to work with leading researchers and contribute to large projects of national significance.

Residents of regional, rural and remote residential aged care facilities (RACF) suffer greatly from poor oral health. Hence, the majority of RACF residents suffer from severe pain and reduced ability to eat, speak, and socialise due to untreated dental diseases, leading to severe health issues. There are significant barriers to delivering oral health care to those facilities. Dental care delivery is critical but highly complex, difficult, and often unaffordable for the majority of regional RACF residents.

This research will adapt and test the effectiveness and feasibility of a comprehensive dental care package that can be delivered effectively and safely in RACFs to elderly residents. The intervention will extend healthy, active years of life amongst vulnerable populations residing in regional and remote RACFs. Primarily, the project will evaluate the effectiveness and feasibility of an intervention package involving the application of a silver fluoride product combined with an atraumatic restorative technique to arrest and seal untreated decay. The program will help policymakers and service providers to deliver healthcare to meet the needs of RACF residents. The intervention will help improve the quality of life and daily activities of those impacted residents and deliver a cost-effective and feasible approach to help this vulnerable population maintain healthy aging.

Scholarship value

As a scholarship recipient, you'll receive: 

  • living stipend of $32,192 per annum tax free (2023 rate), indexed annually
  • tuition fees covered
  • single Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)


Professor Loc Do

School of Dentistry


Preferred educational background

Your application will be assessed on a competitive basis.

We take into account your

  • previous academic record
  • publication record
  • honours and awards
  • employment history.

Potential applicants would benefit from having one or more following characteristics:

  • Experience working with older people in aged care and/or healthcare environments;
  • Research and/or practical experience in the fields of oral health, mental health, or broader healthcare;
  • Experience administering interventions or conducting face-to-face assessments;
  • Experience with quantitative data-analysis;
  • Experience with qualitative research;
  • Experience with translational research. 

The applicant will demonstrate academic achievement in the field(s) of oral health, mental health and/or aged care and the potential for scholastic success.

Latest commencement date

If you are the successful candidate, you must commence by Research Quarter 2, 2024. You should apply at least 3 months prior to the research quarter commencement date.

If you are an international applicant, you may need to apply much earlier for visa requirements.

How to apply

You apply for this project as part of your PhD program application.

View application process