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Free care by dental students

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Treatment is provided by dental or oral health students at teaching clinics throughout Victoria under the supervision of qualified oral health professionals.

Treatment is free at dental teaching clinics.

Who can receive treatment at a teaching clinic?

If you need general or emergency dental care and hold a valid Health care or Pensioner Concession Card you may be able to obtain treatment at a teaching clinic.

health care card  Pensioner Concession Card

Please be aware that not all patients are suitable for treatment by a student and a screening appointment will be required for adults.

Is there any difference in being treated by a student? 

The treatment provided by students is performed under the supervision of qualified dental professionals. Students' work is checked at various stages to ensure that you receive the same level of care that you would expect from a fully qualified dental professional. You can expect to have longer appointment times (up to 3 hours long) and more appointments may be required to complete your treatment. As appointments are very limited, it is important that you are available any day, Monday to Friday and that you attend your appointments. Failure to attend appointments will delay your treatment and may require you to seek treatment at a Community Health Centre.

Many patients are pleasantly surprised by the high quality of care they receive at the teaching clinic. Positive feedback is often received from patients praising the students who completed their treatment and the level of attention they received. 

Where are teaching clinics located?

The majority of teaching is done at The Royal Dental Hospital of Melbourne and Bendigo Health Care Group External website icon. Teaching also takes place at some community dental clinics.

The following community dental clinics offer treatment by dental students.

  • Banyule Community Health (West Heidelberg) External website icon
  • Bendigo Health Care Group (Bendigo) External website icon
  • Darebin Community Health Service (Preston)
  • Doutta Galla Community Health Service (Niddrie)
  • Goulburn Valley Health (Shepparton)
  • Knox Community Health Service (Ferntree Gully)
  • Latrobe Community Health Service (Moe & Morwell)
  • Monashlink Community Health Service (Clayton)
  • Rumbalara Aboriginal Co-operative (Mooroopna)
    (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples only)
  • Western Region Health Centre (Footscray)
  • Western Region Health Centre (Footscray - under 18 years)
  • Whitehorse Community Health Service (Box Hill)
How do I make an appointment?

To make an appointment for the teaching clinic at The Royal Dental Hospital of Melbourne:

Please telephone (03) 9341 1000 between 9.00am and 4.30pm (Monday to Friday only).

A staff member will check that you are eligible for public dental care and whether the treatment you need can be provided by a student.

If you are considered suitable for treatment in a teaching clinic, you will then be made an appointment or placed on the waiting list. The appointment will be for an examination only. No treatment will be provided at this appointment. After this appointment you will be placed on a waiting list if you are suitable.

A minimum of 48 hours notice is required to change or cancel an appointment. Patients who miss more than two appointments in the teaching clinic will need to seek treatment at a Community Health Centre or will be placed on the general waiting list at The Royal Dental Hospital of Melbourne.

To make an appointment at a community dental teaching clinic:

To organise an appointment, please go to our community dental clinics search for the relevant contact details or call (03) 9341 1000. A staff member will need to check that you are eligible for public dental care and whether the treatment you need can be provided by a student.