About the DHAA Ltd.

As the professional body representing dental hygienists in Australia, the National Association and Australian State and Territory Branches are working for the continuing development of the profession of dental hygiene.


The National Association was formed in 1991 and the Council meets bi-annually to address issues relating to the uniformity of practice and training throughout Australia, and to plan for the continuing growth and application of the profession.


DHAA Ltd. National Members

President: Dr. Melanie Hayes


President Elect: Jo Purssey 


Treasurer: Cheryl Dey


Councillor (ACT): Kate Farmer


Councillor (NSW): Ian Epondulan


Councillor (Qld): Karen Toms


Councillor (SA): Alison Taylor


Councillor (TAS): Danielle Gibbens

Councillor (Vic): Stella Cristini


Councillor (WA): Rhonda Kremmer

Editor - The Bulletin: Erika Pope, Yvonne Flaskas & Joanna Mohammadi


Editor - Hygiene Today: Clare McNally


IFDH Delegates: President and President Elect


IT Chair: Josh Galpin


Sponsorship Chair: Rebecca Milfull

What is a Dental Hygienist?

What is a Dental Hygienist?
Download a free copy of this brochure, developed in conjunction with Oral B and the DHAA Inc.
Adobe Acrobat Document [3.9 MB]

Benefits of Membership

DHAA Member Benefits brochure
Download a free copy of this brochure to see the benefits you can get from being a DHAA Ltd. Member.
DHAA Membership Flyer.pdf
Adobe Acrobat Document [1.2 MB]


The profession of Dental Hygiene began in Australia in 1976, when dental hygienists became a recognised dental professional within the State of South Australia. Other Australian States and Territories have progressively introduced the profession on their statutes since 1981, and dental hygienists may now lawfully practice across Australia.


Hygienists may also practice within the Australian Defence Force anywhere across Australia.


We have prepared extra useful information on working in Australia for overseas dental hygienists seeking employment in this country.




To practice as a Dental Hygienist, registration with the Dental Board of Australia is required. For further details regarding registration requirements and procedures, visit the Dental Board of Australia website.

Dental Hygiene Services

Dental hygiene services are available for general and speciality dental practices, programs for research, professional education, community health, hospital and institutional care of disabled persons, as well as federal programs, the armed services, and dental products promotion, sales, and marketing.


A higher percentage of dental hygienists in Australia work in general practices; a smaller number work in specialist practices, for example, in periodontic, orthodontic and prosthodontic practices.


There are other diverse areas of dentistry that dental hygienists are involved with, such as:



Working in teaching institutions with specialists conducting clinical studies and trials. For example, the High Caries Clinic at the Dental Hospital in South Australia, or the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) - data collection for statistical information.


Professional Education

Presenting research at seminars, congresses, and meetings, and training of dentists, dental hygiene students and dental assistants.

Community Health

Community dental clinics, group talks and assistance, for example: HIV sufferers, ante-natal, dietary disorders such as bulimia and anorexia, persons with diabetes, mental health and physically compromised individuals, alzheimer sufferers and their carers. Other areas include long term residential care, hospitals and nursing homes.


Australian Defence Force

Army, Navy and Air

Marketing & Sales

Dental products promotion via dental companies, becoming a dental company representative.