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Canada’s Dental Assistant Shortage = Your Extraordinary Career Opportunity

By December 22, 2023No Comments
Dental Assistant

With the pandemic having exacerbated prior staffing issues, and the upcoming Canadian National Dental Plan opening access and increasing demand for dental care, there is a situation arising in the industry, one that presents a career opportunity for you.

Lynn Tomkins, President of the Canadian Dental Association (CDA) shared with Global News that there is a current shortage of almost 5,000 dental assistants and has warned that without adequate staffing, many dental clinics will not be able to meet the patient demand.

While this is of major concern for those of us looking to access care, for those seeking an in-demand career and looking to become a dental assistant, the timing for training at a dental assistant college and launching a future in this field has never been better.

What are the issues facing the dental industry and how do you become part of the solution?

Canada’s Dental Assistant Shortage = Your Extraordinary Career Opportunity


Dental Shortage Issues

  • Staffing Shortages – According to the CDA:
    • “… the number of dental assistants in the workforce was an obstacle even before the pandemic. … The post-pandemic reality has worsened the challenge of hiring and retaining dental assistants.” (CDA President 2022, Dr. Holden)
    • “The shortage of dental assisting is the number one issue for dentists across the country. … So dentists have had to alter their hours, in some cases reduce their hours because they don’t have the support staff…” (CDA President 2023, Lynn Tompkins).
  • Federal Funding – In March the federal government announced the Canadian Dental Care plan, which will make way for millions more Canadians who currently struggle to afford dental care to have access.
  • Patient and Industry Impact – With this increase in the ability for Canadians to finally receive dental care, in order for dentists to meet that need they will require qualified dental assistant support. If you’ve thought about dental assistant certification, the time is now. With more Canadians to serve, dental assistants will be in ever greater demand.

Your Career Opportunity

“Dental assistants are crucial members of dentist-led teams and without them, the gap to access to dental care will widen. Dentists need more formally-trained, licensed dental assistants to help maintain and increase Canadians’ access to oral health care.” ~ Dr. Holden
In imagining your future and training for a career, your number one priority after dedicating yourself to your studies, is to graduate and enter into a field that is in demand, where a job is waiting for you.

This is it.

Now, you need only select a dental assistant course/dental assistant program that has a track record for quality training, led by industry experts and student testimonials to back that up.

At Anderson College we have Dental Assistant program options in various cities in Ontario to choose from. These programs range from 46 to 51 weeks, are taught by field experts, and include both theoretical and hands-on training in our state-of-the-art dental laboratories and a practicum with potential employers.

Our programs are HARP approved (Healing Arts Radiation Protection) by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and fully prepare students to take the certification exams through the National Dental Assisting Examining Board (NDAEB).

In addition, if you’re a licensed nurse, currently employed as a dental office administrator or as a dental assistant, you can also expand your skillset with our 100-hour Dental Radiography course.

Student Success Stories

While we are exceedingly proud of our team and dedicated to providing programs that meet the highest standards, nothing speaks to the practical impact this career training has on students’ lives, like their firsthand accounts.

Our Anderson Graduate Stories:


If you are looking to embrace a career that has a direct impact on your community, that will make a powerful difference in the lives of others, there has never been a better time to explore the opportunity that dental assisting now presents. From supporting a healthcare team in need to the patients awaiting care, your position will be in demand for years to come.

If you’re still considering how your interests and skills may align with this profession, you can take the “Dental Professional Career Discovery Quiz”.

When you’re ready to launch your Intra Oral Dental Assistant career, we’re here to help you navigate the steps to get there. Book a virtual appointment with our Admissions team and let’s get you started.

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