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Dentists rank high in Gallup poll

December 05, 2012

By Karen Fox, ADA News staff

Princeton, N.J.—Dentists have moved up to No. 5 in the latest Gallup poll asking the public to rate professions based on their honesty and ethical standards.

Twenty-two professions were tested in Gallup's update of the perceived honesty and ethical standards of professions poll released Dec. 3. Survey respondents rated each profession on a five-point honesty and ethical scale ranging from “very high” to “very low.”

Dentists came through with an honesty rating of 62 percent this year—slightly lower than physicians, pharmacists and nurses but tied with their 2006 score. “The honesty ratings of all medical professions are at the highest levels in Gallup's history, albeit by slim margins,” according to Gallup.

Nurses scored the highest of all the professions tested—with 85 percent of respondents rating the ethics and honesty of nurses as very high or high. Rounding out the top 10 after nurses were pharmacists, physicians, engineers, dentists, police officers, college teachers, clergy, psychiatrists and chiropractors.

The lowest ranked professions were members of Congress (only 10 percent rated their ethics and honesty as very high or high) and car salespeople (8 percent). 
Results of the poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Nov. 26-29 with a random sampling of 1,015 adults age 18 and older in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Gallup has conducted this same poll periodically but doesn't always include dentists as one of the professions tested.