July 6, 2001
Volume XXXIV, No. 27


Making the Rounds

Of Note


Dr. Baez receives international award

Portrait of Dr. Baez DR. BAEZ

Dr. Ramon J. Baez, associate professor of general dentistry, will receive the prestigious International Dentist of the Year Award this fall from the Academy of Dentistry International. This international honor society recognizes dentists who are dedicated to sharing knowledge that meets dental and oral health needs and improves quality of life worldwide.

The academy's board of regents selected Dr. Baez as the dentist who best exemplifies international leadership. He will be honored Oct. 11 at the USA Section Convention in Kansas City and will be inducted as an honorary fellow of the academy.

Dr. Baez, who was notified of his selection for the award in mid-June, is head of the World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Centre in Oral Health at the UTHSC Dental School. His interests include research and development of biomaterials, oral epidemiology research surveys, effectiveness of cariostatic agents, water and salt fluoridation, and exposure to fluoride. Cariostatic agents are those that prevent tooth decay.

Through the WHO Collaborating Centre, Dr. Baez has provided technical assistance to 39 countries in matters related to oral health. He is a member of the American National Standards Institute/American Dental Association (ANSI/ADA) committee for development of specifications for dental products. He also is a member of the ANSI/ADA Technical Advisory Group and a member of the delegation that represents the United States to the International Standardization Organization.

Dr. Baez has studied abrasion caused by tooth brushing, color attributes of esthetic materials, and use of titanium, porcelain and glass ceramics in dentistry, to name a few of his research projects. In a project reported in 2000 in the Pan American Journal of Public Health, Dr. Baez, along with his wife, Martha X. Baez, assistant professor of community dentistry, and Dr. Thomas M. Marthaler, professor emeritus at the University of Zurich in Switzerland, measured fluoride exposure in young children in San Isidro, a Texas border community on the Rio Grande. Dr. Baez is developing a study on fluoride exposure in children living in the Paso del Norte Region, which includes El Paso. The Center for Border Health Research is funding that project.

Among the world's many capable dental researchers and humanitarians in the field, only one individual is selected to receive the academy's annual award. "I am quite honored to be so recognized," Dr. Baez said.