General Practice Residency
Dental students interested in this particular program may contact the program director listed below and request a full list of goals and objectives for residents training and a description of the nature of assignments to other departments and/or institutions.
Navy GPR Program Goals
Navy General Practice Residency Programs are structured to develop competent and confident Naval Dental Officers who are able to transition into any military clinic in the world and contribute to mission readiness. The programs are designed to expand the scope and depth of the graduates' knowledge and skills enabling them to provide comprehensive oral health care to a wide range of population groups. Graduates of these programs will have the foundation to act as independent clinicians providing and managing patient focused care from diagnosis to restoration of oral health and function.
The overall goals of these programs include preparation of the graduate to:
- Act as a primary care provider for individuals and groups of patients. This includes: providing emergency and multidisciplinary comprehensive oral health care; providing patient focused care that is coordinated by the general practitioner; directing health promotion and disease prevention activities; and using advanced dental treatment modalities.
- Plan and provide multidisciplinary oral health care for a wide variety of patients including patients with special needs.
- Manage the delivery of oral health care by applying concepts of patient and practice management and quality improvement that are responsive to a dynamic health care environment.
- Function effectively within the hospital and other health care environments.
- Function effectively within interdisciplinary health care teams.
- Apply scientific principles to learning and oral health care. This includes using critical thinking, evidence or outcomes-based clinical decision-making, and technology-based information retrieval systems.
- Utilize the values of professional ethics, lifelong learning, patient centered care, adaptability, and acceptance of cultural diversity in professional practice.
- Understand the oral health needs of communities and engage in community service.
Since 1972, The Navy Dental Corps has offered a General Practice Residency (GPR) in dentistry for hospital-based postgraduate training. There are currently five programs that annually admit 24 recent dental school graduates. Each resident is commissioned as a Naval Dental Officer in the United States Navy Dental Corps. These residents begin a one-year training program, commencing in August of each calendar year and following 6 weeks of Officer Indoctrination School in beautiful Newport, Rhode Island. The residency emphasizes comprehensive dentistry and includes exposure in each dental specialty, or a specific rotation in the specialty, under the direct mentorship of board certified staff. There will also be 2-4 weeks spent in both Anesthesia and Emergency (or Internal) Medicine. Rotations are designed to allow the resident to work one on one with board certified specialists throughout training, and truly push the educational experience to the next level beyond dental school. Each program is fully accredited by the ADA.
There are three primary components to each program.
- Indoctrination, which familiarizes the GPR with issues ranging from Navy career development and management techniques to hospital protocol including credentials, staff privileging and interdepartmental communication and treatment coordination.
- Clinical phase, which occupies over 70% of the year.
- Didactic phase which provides weekly educational experience in either seminar or lecture/discussion format.
These 3 phases are not mutually exclusive and run concurrently through the year.
In the hospital setting, residents are exposed to a wide range of medically compromised and special care patients. These patients will significantly expand the resident's medical knowledge base and require the development of an expansive repertoire of treatment alternatives and methods of management. The utilization of good consultative skills with physician counterparts is essential.
The remainder of patient care is oriented toward routine comprehensive dental treatment of the local-area active duty military population. The opportunity to deliver dental treatment in the main operating room arena will be utilized to care for surgery patients and other patients unable to receive dental treatment in the normal operatory setting. Experience is received in delivery of care utilizing various sedation techniques. There is also a high volume of emergency treatment and referrals, each a significant part of the daily routine on a hospital Oral and Maxillofacial service. Referrals range from trauma, to infection, medical symptoms and syndromes and varying sources of oral facial pain. Supplementing the daily exposure to emergency patients, the GPR maintains an on-call schedule providing exposure to treating not only dental emergencies but additionally, facial infections and minor medical emergencies.
Didactic training is frequently done in a seminar or open "discussion-style" format. Lecture presentations are directed at topics beyond the dental school curriculum and literature review seminars are used to explore current topics. Patient treatment is reviewed by mentors and discussed; case discussions and presentations are made within the group. Overall comprehensive care of patients is emphasized, based on a foundation of sound current and classic dental and medical literature. Additional training involves certification in basic trauma life support, advanced cardiac life support, and BLS instructor course.
Upon completion of their residency, most GPRs will be assigned to an independent duty as a department head or branch clinic or to a small clinic where dental specialty care is likely to not be available on a regular basis. Follow on assignments may be at any Naval installation worldwide, and range from 1-3 years in length. One goal of our programs is to provide a well-rounded, confident general dentist who can function independent of dental specialists when deployed to support the men and women of the finest Navy in the world. Duties may include medical augmentation roles, such as anesthesia, triage and support of a mass casualty or disaster situation.
Consideration for selection is based upon dental school grades, class standing, prior experience, mentor recommendations and motivation of the candidates. See links to this page for further information about the Navy GPR programs. Application packages and further information about Navy programs are available through local Navy recruiters, or by reaching one of our program directors, listed below.
Current GPR Program locations, program directors and contacts: