Christiane Chammas, a senior dental/DMD-MPH student at the School of Dental Medicine won first place in the Annual Pre-Doctoral Dental Student Merit Award for Outstanding Achievement in Community Dentistry, sponsored by the American Association of Public Health Dentistry. Each U.S. dental school is eligible to nominate a maximum of two students for the award each year. The winners were announced during the association’s business meeting (remote) in May as well as the virtual National Oral Health Conference (NOHC) last month.
The award-winning submission was based on Chammas’ MPH capstone project titled “Dentists’ Knowledge, Opinions, Attitudes, and Prescription Practices of Opioids.”
Opioid abuse is a significant public health problem. For her research, Chammas collected data from all the oral maxillofacial surgeons as well as a random sample of 500 general dentists in Ohio.
Her mentor is Sena Narendran, associate professor in the Department of Community Dentistry, who also directs the residency program in dental public health as well as the dual degree program in dental medicine and public health.
Last year’s first place winner of the award was Alisha Jimenez Thompson, another dual degree (DMD-MPH) student, whose research was about improving access to dental care for people living with HIV/AIDS. Thus, a few DMD-MPH students’ capstone projects have been focusing on current public health issues.