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Participating in 2015 GKAS? Share your photos

The 2015 Give Kids A Smile Day is Feb. 6, and program coordinators nationwide should have their digital cameras ready to capture the highlights of the event.

The ADA News welcomes digital photo submissions from GKAS program participants — including candid pictures of children, dentists and team members interacting and clinical photos (patients in the chair, dental team in gloves, masks and protective eyewear). Be sure to include identification of those pictured and facts about your event.

Send high-resolution photos for consideration for use in the ADA News in print and online to adanews@ada.org as soon as possible following your event.

GKAS photosProgram coordinators can also post photos on the new ADA GKAS Facebook page (http://facebook.com/GiveKidsASmile). Clinical photos submitted for the site should also show dental professionals using universal precautions.

With GKAS Day just a couple of weeks away, a total of 1,324 GKAS events have registered, and estimate they will treat nearly 320,000 children on or around Feb. 6. Nearly 8,000 dentists and almost 25,000 other dental team members and lay volunteers will be providing care to kids in need through GKAS programs.

Programs are encouraged to register if they haven’t done so yet — either before or after their events, and all program coordinators/dentist participants are asked to report their actual program totals following their events.

Log on to givekidsasmile.ada.org. GKAS corporate sponsors continue to generously support the program. Henry Schein Dental will provide professional dental kits containing gloves, patient bibs and bib holders, masks, plastic cups, tongue depressors, gauze pads, prophy angles and past, fluoride varnish and chair sleeves. Colgate Palmolive Co. has donated toothbrushes and toothpaste. DEXIS Digital X-ray Systems will donate the use of their X-ray units and the expertise of their staff to U.S. dental schools requesting assistance, state associations and large group practices during GKAS.

Can you sing or play an instrument?

The Medical Musical Group chorale and symphony orchestra are seeking health care professionals, students and family members who sing or play musical instruments.

MMG’s 2015 schedule includes a Nov. 1 concert in Washington, D.C., followed by a trip to England and Scotland, with a major concert Nov. 7 at London’s Central Hall Westminster. To view some of their performances, go to YouTube.com and search for “Medical Musical Group.” For more information, Call 1.202.797.0700, visit medicalmusical.org or email vanmmg@hotmail.com.

Know anyone who has volunteered internationally?

Do you know a dentist who has generously given their time, talents and skills by volunteering internationally?

Int'l Volunteer Svc LogoApplications are due April for the Certificate for International Volunteer Service, a program that recognizes ADA members who have volunteered in developing countries to improve the oral health and overall health of individuals.

Criteria for applying for and receiving the certificate include:

  • Be an active, life, student or retired member of the American Dental Association.
  • Have served in an international location with a program sponsored by a dental school or recognized nonprofit organization for a minimum of 14 days, either in one period or in several visits, in any 24-month period.
  • Have provided clinical dental service and/or taught local dental personnel or assisted in training initiatives to improve the local oral healthcare infrastructure.
  • Supply evidence of the dates of the service with a comprehensive, detailed breakdown of activities and the value of the contribution by means of a letter or testimonial from the director of the program or other appropriate official (for student members working in a dental school program this requirement shall be the responsibility of the dean or director of the outreach program).
  • Be nominated by a component or constituent society, federal dental service or dental school.
  • Be verified in writing to be a member in good standing by the component society, if such exists, or by the constituent society, commanding officer or dean of the dental school as appropriate.

Nominations are reviewed by the ADA Board of Trustees at the June meeting. Recipients will be announced within 30 days of the meeting and the certificates will be distributed to the recipient, or to the nominating component or constituent societies upon request. A certificate may be awarded to the same individual more than once.

For more information on the Certificate for International Volunteer Service or to submit a nomination, click here.

Know the difference between accidents and signs of domestic violence?

In a year where high-profile accusations of family violence have rocked the National Football League, the ADA House of Delegates streamlined Association policy on family violence during its meetings at ADA 2014 — America’s Dental Meeting in San Antonio, according to ADA News.

An employee crying

Resolution 89H-2014, Educating Dental Professionals in Recognizing and Reporting Abuse, states that “the ADA supports educating dental professionals to recognize abuse and neglect across all age groups and reporting such incidences to the proper authorities as required by state law.” The House rescinded policies from 1993 and 1996.

“Family violence has been a hot topic in the news media as high-profile players in the NFL have been accused of violence against children or partners,” said Dr. Lynn Douglas Mouden, chief dental officer for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. “There is a universal mandate for U. S. dentists to report suspected cases of abuse or neglect of children, but dentists should also be aware that some states also mandate reporting cases that deal with adults and elders as well.”

Are you able to discern the difference between accidents and intentional injuries or signs of violence? Do you know what your state’s law in regards to reporting family violence?

If your answer is “no,” Dr. Mouden suggests attending the 7th Biennial National Conference on Health and Domestic Violence, set for March 19-21, at the Renaissance Washington, D.C. Downtown Hotel.

“With training, dentists are better able to discern the difference between accidents and intentional injuries, or between otherwise normal conditions and the signs of violence,” Dr. Mouden said. “Because laws vary from state to state, dentists should work with their state dental association to learn more about the laws regarding reporting of family violence and about opportunities to learn more about preventing family violence.”

For more details on the conference, hotel accommodations or to register, click here.

10 steps to increase provider participation in Medicaid/streamline administration

Here are 10 steps to increase provider participation in Medicaid and to streamline the administrative process from Action for Dental Health, a nationwide, community-based movement aimed at ending the dental health crisis facing America today.

Action for Dental Health

  • Step 1: Talk with the manager of Provider Enrollment for your state and review the process for enrolling in the Medicaid program. Confirm basic information such as documentation expectations, electronic filing and ability to participate on a limited basis.
  • Step 2: Identify populations of interest that your practice will serve. Determine how those patients will access your practice, whether via local community outreach or referrals from the local community health center after being triaged.
  • Step 3: Discuss with your state dental association the current baseline of provider participation and the data that will be coordinated as reported by your state to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in its CMS 416 report. This information is the basis for determining what positive results are being seen due to increased provider participation.
  • Step 4: Participate in a state Dental Medicaid Advisory Committee or form a committee if one does not exist in your state. Invite other Medicaid providers, both private practice dentists and those working within community health centers, to participate.
  • Step 5: Review Medicaid rates, prior authorization and enrollment processes for your state. Are adult Medicaid benefits available? Was there an increase in providers if rates were increased? Learn what negotiation and compromise efforts were performed.
  • Step 6: To streamline your credentialing and provider eligibility process, review those states making a positive difference (Oklahoma, California, Maryland and Kentucky). Invite the people who perform the enrolling process to your Medicaid advisory committee to investigate what might be done in your state to expedite credentialing.
  • Step 7: Meet with the manager of your state Medicaid Integrity Program to learn of the processes they follow for chart audits and review. Explain the need for uniform compliance training for auditors for reviews. Discuss with your Medicaid Advisory Committee.
  • Step 8: Maintain strong lines of communication with the state Medicaid program, the state oral health program, the ADA and Medicaid-CHIP Dental Association who can be resources for you.
  • Step 9: Share program successes and failures with your local dental society.
  • Step 10: Write an article for your state dental association journal about your Dental Medicaid Advisory Committee, your experiences in treating the underserved and the value that dentistry can provide in communicating with the local medical community about the importance of integrating oral health for patient overall health.

To view the full 10-step process, click here. For more information about the ADA’s Action for Dental Health, visit ADA.org/action.

10 steps to starting a Head Start program in your office

Head Start began as a summer program in 1965 and serves the nation’s most vulnerable children. It focuses on school readiness with inclusion of medical, dental, nutrition and mental health.

Action for Dental HealthAction for Dental Health has created a basic 10-step process to launching your own Head Start program in your dental office.

In essence, the 10 steps are:

  • Step 1: Call the local Community Action Agency and speak with the director about oral exam federal compliance opportunities.
  • Step 2: Discuss with local officials (county commissioners) what percentage of their Head Start children have received dental exams and what more can be done.
  • Step 3: Arrange appropriate follow-up care for those children identified with dental needs.
  • Step 4: Present in-services on early childhood decay to local pediatricians/family medicine staff and promote the need for caries risk assessment, anticipatory guidance and referrals to establish a dental home.
  • Step 5: Become a registered state dental Medicaid provider.
  • Step 6: Meet with community leaders from United Way, local foundations or faith-based communities to discuss health needs/support for young children to access dental exams.
  • Step 7: Discuss opportunities to partner with local business community in holding events aimed at Head Start children receiving dental screening services and oral health education.
  • Step 8: Utilize local dental society meetings to coordinate Head Start screenings and follow-up care.
  • Step 9: Evaluate the success of the program.
  • Step 10: Visit the Women, Infant, Children Department (WIC) in the local health department or county offices and determine need for children under age 5 to have dental exams.

To read more on the 10 steps to starting a Head Start program in your office, click here. For more information, contact Dr. Jane Gover, director of the ADA Council on Access, Prevention and Interprofessional Relations at groverj@ada.org. For more information on Action for Dental Health, visit ADA.org/action.

Editors’ Pick: Favorite New Dentist Now blog posts of 2014

It’s been an eventful 2014 for New Dentist Now as it continues to feature resources for new dentists and dental students, along with news and insight on the dental profession and beyond.

Just in case you missed them, here’s a look back to some of our favorite and most popular blog posts of the year.

ASDA annual session set for February 2015 in Boston

Bringing together students from all 65 U.S. dental schools, the American Student Dental Association will host its 2015 annual session Feb. 18-21, 2015, in Boston.

ASDA Annual SessionRegistration deadline is Jan. 16 to guarantee hotel reservations at the Westin Boston Waterfront. Some fees may apply for late registrations.

Highlights at the event include the business meeting of the House of Delegates, elections of ASDA national leaders, the Dental Expo, prominent speakers within dentistry addressing hot topics, and awards recognizing the achievements of ASDA chapters and members. ADA leadership and staff will also be participating in the annual session. The meeting concludes with a celebratory gala.

For more information and to register, visit asdanet.org/annualsession.

Have you ever attended the ASDA annual session?

From Baghdad to Memphis, Dr. Mack provides dental aid

Memphis, Tennessee’s daily newspaper The Daily News featured this week an article on Dr. Edward Mack, a new dentist practicing in East Memphis, and his work as a brigade dentist in the U.S. Army with the 82nd Airborne Division in Baghdad.

According to the story, Dr. Mack, an endodontist, spent seven months in Iraq, treating close to 1,000 of the division’s 3,500 soldiers.

“Some of it was extraction and some of it was routine,” Mack told The Daily News of the dental work. “Some of it was palliative. We were in combat situations. I had to work out of a backpack.”

Dr. Mack received the Combat Medical Badge as well as the Army Commendation Medal, according to the article. He is a member of the ADA, the Tennessee Dental Association and the Memphis Dental Society.

To read the full story, click here.

Get ready for NCDHM 2015

Dentists nationwide can help their young patients “defeat monster mouth” by participating in the ADA’s 2015 National Children’s Dental Health Month.

For the 66th year, the NCDHM campaign brings thousands of dedicated dental professionals, health care providers and others together to promote the benefits of good oral health to children, adults, caregivers and teachers.

Defeat Monster This year’s two-sided poster features the NCDHM campaign slogan “Defeat Monster Mouth.” The free posters are available in English and Spanish thanks to a grant from the ADA Foundation.

Information regarding how to order or download posters can be found at ADA.org/ncdhm.

Also available on the website is the NCDHM Program Planning Guide, which provides program coordinators, dental societies, teachers and parents with resources to promote the benefits of good oral health to children.

The guide includes easy-to-do activities, program planning timetable tips, a sample NCDHM proclamation and more. Other free campaign materials, including publicity resources and activity sheets — many in both English and Spanish — can also be downloaded.

For answers to questions regarding NCDHM, email ncdhm@ada.org.

A variety of brochures, videos, activity and coloring books for children are also available from the ADA Catalog. Visit adacatalog.org or call 1-800-947-4746 for more information.