The winners of the 2024 Max Horsnell Travel Award and National Student Elective prize have been announced by the British Society of Paediatric Dentistry (BSPD). These annual awards recognise vision and endeavour in the field of paediatric dentistry.

The prizes are awarded each year following a judging process for both that is overseen by three members of BSPD’s Conference Abstract and Prize Committee (CAPC).

There are two winners of the Max Horsnell Travel Award. BSPD established this travel bursary to support members (excluding consultants and equivalent academic grades) who wish to present a poster or oral communication at scientific meetings of the European Academy of Paediatric Dentistry or the International Association of Paediatric Dentistry. An award of £500 is given towards travel costs to relevant dentistry conferences per annum.

Claudia Heggie is the joint-winner of the BSPD Max Horsnell Travel Award 2024

Claudia Heggie from University of Leeds submitted the winning paper entitled: ‘”It’s like being chained up”- Oral mucositis experience in children with cancer, parents and healthcare teams, a qualitative study’.

The purpose of Claudia’s paper is to explore the experiences of children and young people (CYP) with cancer, their parents, and healthcare professionals (HCPs) of oral mucositis. Claudia found that oral mucositis affects treatment experiences, and participants expressed a strong desire to prevent mucositis as a supportive care priority.

Nabih Alkhouri is the joint-winner of the BSPD Max Horsnell Travel Award 204

Nabih Alkhouri from The Royal National ENT and Eastman Dental Hospitals, University College London submitted the winning paper entitled: ‘Endodontic treatment of traumatised children`s teeth using the pre-mixed bioceramics: case series’.

The objective was to show the value a new generation of pre-mixed bioceramics which are now available in either putty or injectable forms. These have the potential to simplify endodontic treatment. Nabih’s paper concluded that pre-mixed bioceramics are well tolerated by children and could be used in open and closed apices to fully obturate the canal to CEJ level.

Penelope Thompson is the winner of the BSPD National Student Elective Prize 2024

This competition was open to BSPD student members who intend to undertake an elective project within the year. Students submitted a summary of a maximum of 250 words describing their proposed elective project involving the dental health of children. The winning student submits a short report on their elective project once completed. One award of the value of £300 is given for the National Student Elective Prize to support the student’s elective project.

Penelope Thompson from University of Sheffield submitted the winning elective project entitled: ‘Student use and knowledge of behaviour management techniques (BMT) in the Paediatric Dentistry Clinic’. Part of Penelope’s conclusion was that evaluating undergraduate students’ awareness, confidence with, and use of BMT may identify further areas for research and teaching needs.

Chris Vernazza, chair of the BSPD Conference Abstracts and Prizes Committee, said, “Year after year, the society is delighted to see the continuation of such a high standard of entries to the Max Horsnell Awards. This year is certainly no exception – as we see joint winners who have both looked at improving patient’s treatment experinces. Claudia found that in cancer patients, oral mucositis impacts treatment experiences, showing the importance of focusing on preventing this condition. Whilst Nabih’s looked at simplifying endodontic treatment using pre-mixed bioceramics. The BSPD judging panel was impressed by both the visionary, yet practical, approach and outcomes of their research – both of which will improve patient experiences and support children’s oral health.

“The submissions for the National Student Elective Prize this year were also excellent. The judges were impressed by Penelope’s investigation into behaviour management techniques in paediatric dentistry.”