The University of Hong Kong has been approved to teach the EFP-accredited master’s degree in periodontology.
The university becomes the first outside Europe* to receive EFP accreditation, an illustration of the federation’s increasingly global perspective and reach.
The Master of Dental Surgery (Periodontology) at the University of Hong Kong is the oldest specialist training programme in Asia and is taught within the university’s Division of Periodontology and Implant Dentistry.
The programme director is Prof Maurizio Tonetti, who is also editor of the EFP’s Journal of Clinical Periodontology, with Dr George Pelekos as co-director and clinical co-ordinator. The other full-time teachers are Prof Lijian Jin, Prof W. Keung Leung, Dr Dominic Ho, Dr Stanley Lai, and Dr Elvis Tsang. Part-time teachers include Dr Dae-Yun Lee, Dr Dave Chan, Dr Judy Tse, Dr Melissa Fok, and Dr Janet Wong.
The three-year programme accepts four residents each year, so there is a total of 12 students pursuing the master’s degree in periodontology, which is based at the Institute of Advanced Dentistry of the University of Hong Kong and Prince Philip Dental Hospital.
The programme’s mission is to train clinical and academic leaders who will serve periodontology as specialists in Asia and beyond. Residents spend 40% of their time in supervised patient care at specialist level, 30% in teaching and learning, and 30% in research.
The programme is also recognised by the College of Dental Surgeons of the National Academy of Medicine as the first step required for becoming a specialist in periodontology in Hong Kong.
“We are delighted and proud to meet the EFP standards for specialist training,” said Prof Tonetti. “Meeting such a high internationally recognised benchmark is critically important to realise our vision of being the catalyst to develop perio as a clinical specialty in Asia.”
He added that “more than half of the burden of periodontitis affects populations in this region of the world and we are committed to train the leaders required to meet this challenge. I am very pleased that the EFP is supporting us in our vision and look forward to fruitful exchanges with the other programmes.”
On a personal note, he added that he was “really happy about the achievement of my team” as well as “particularly proud for bringing a second accredited programme to the EFP family”, following UCL-Eastman Dental Institute (London, UK) in 2001.
Moshe Goldstein, chair of the EFP postgraduate-education committee, said that the Hong Kong programme “was found to meet the high EFP requirements for accreditation”, with the final site visit taking place on June 12 and 13, where Prof Goldstein was accompanied by Prof Bahar Eren Kuru (EFP representative, member of postgraduate-education committee) and Dr Simon Ho (member of the periodontology speciality board of the Hong Kong National Academy of Medicine).
“In my opinion, this is another important step that represents the potential for influence the EFP can have on international periodontology,” he added.
There are now 16 EFP-accredited programmes in 12 countries: Belgium (2), France (2), Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel (2), Italy, Netherlands, Spain (2), Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.
* “Europe” as defined by the World Health Organization’s European region which includes 53 countries.