Surge in Dentist Numbers in Spain with Almost 41,000 Registered Professionals
Spain has witnessed a significant increase in the number of registered dentists, reaching a staggering figure of 40,968 professionals. This represents a remarkable growth of 26.3% over the past decade, as there were 32,445 dentists registered in 2013.
These statistics reveal that the national ratio of active dentists per 100,000 inhabitants stands at 82, rising to 134 in the Community of Madrid, which boasts the highest concentration of practicing dentistry professionals in the country. Conversely, the region with the lowest rate is Castilla La Mancha, with 46 dentists per 100,000 inhabitants.
Notably, the number of female dentists has seen a significant increase from 17,241 in 2013 to 23,916 in 2022. A decade ago, women accounted for 52.1% of the total, but they now represent 58.4% of dentists in Spain.
Regarding dentistry degrees, the annual number of graduates from both public and private faculties has remained steady, with a current rate of 1,775 students per year.
Based on projection analysis, it is estimated that the number of active dentists in 2030 will reach 44,600 professionals. These calculations consider a substantial decrease in the percentage of graduates who eventually register as dentists. In 2022, only 31% of graduates were registered, compared to a figure above 50% between 2017 and 2020.
These key findings are derived from a technical report on the demography of dentists in Spain, compiled by the General Council of Dentists using data provided by the National Institute of Statistics (INE) and the Ministry of Health.
Spain: The Dentist Hub of Europe
"Spain is among the countries with the highest number of annual dental graduates, exceeding 1,700, owing to the proliferation of dental schools," stated Óscar Castro Reino, President of the General Council of Dentists. "However, this issue is exacerbated by the inadequate provision of dental care, resulting in a detrimental equation that drives dental professionals to seek emigration or face underemployment."
According to the head of the collegiate organization, the escalating surplus of professionals "constitutes a genuine problem that authorities must address."
"It is illogical to have an overabundance of dentists in our society when there are only 960 dentists working in public healthcare," he emphasized. "If we genuinely aspire to promote a dental health plan that fulfills the basic needs of the population, it is imperative to hire more professionals and prioritize oral health in public health policies."