The Long Island Dental Hygienists’ Association, known as LIDHA, has no affiliation with the Long Island Dental Hygienists’ Forum, known as LIDHF.
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ADHA COVID-19 UPDATES
LIDHA has been in contact with The New York Dental Hygienists’ Association (NYDHA) who have been working closely with the ADHA advocating for dental hygienists across New York state during this unprecedented time. NYDHA is at the forefront of developments, diligently monitoring the COVID-19 situation and actions of government and healthcare entities daily. At a time when the needs and concerns of NYS dental hygienists are high, NYDHA provides a strong voice. NYDHA’s advocacy initiatives have achieved milestones for the practice of the dental hygiene profession in recent years, and they continue to provide NYS dental hygienists with groundbreaking leadership. Visit NYDHA’s website for the latest in professional, educational, and legislative information:
UPDATE FROM NYDHA:
Beginning January 4, eligible New Yorkers in Phase 1A for the COVID-19 vaccine include dental hygienists, dentists and other dental team members. Read the Health Dept. info here. Prior to receiving the vaccination, you must complete the New York State COVID-19 Vaccine Form, which you do online and you will receive a submission ID, or at your vaccination site. Read more
On Dec. 14, Governor Cuomo issued Executive Order 202.82 authorizing dentists and also dental hygienists who are certified for local infiltration anesthesia, have basic CPR certification and take vaccine administration, to administer COVID-19 vaccinations at points-of dispensing centers overseen or approved by the state or local health departments. To volunteer, click here.
Dental practices are designated essential in NYS. See NYS Health Dept. Interim Guidance for Dentistry During the COVID-19 Pandemic; summary of guidance and safety plan template
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UPDATE: NY DENTAL CARE HAS RESUMED
May 31, 2020
In the evolving circumstances, the following is the announcement from the Governor made this afternoon.
Governor Cuomo has announced that New York dentists can reopen statewide Monday, June 1, with dental offices subject to state guidance on best practices for safety and social distancing. Accompanying NYS Health Dept. Interim Guidance for Dentistry During the COVID-19 Pandemic also has been issued.
UPDATE: CONTINUED DENTAL EMERGENCY CARE ONLY
May 30, 2020
New York State continues to designate dentistry for emergency only. See the NYS look-up site for counties and types of businesses and services, including those in phase 2. The NAICS code for dental offices is 21210 (North American Industry Classification System). For dental offices it states: “Your business is currently permitted to operate with restrictions statewide. Restrictions that are applicable to your industry are as follows: Notwithstanding the foregoing: emergency dental care may continue to be provided.” This is an evolving circumstance. Watch for developments at NYDHA’s website. NYDHA continues to advocate with state officials for dental hygienists and patient care.
NEW CDC GUIDANCE
May 21, 2020
Today the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released updated Guidance for Dental Settings.
Here is a summary of the recent changes:
• Recommendations are provided for resuming non- emergency dental care during the COVID-19 pandemic.
• New information is included regarding facility and equipment considerations, sterilization and disinfection, and considerations for the use of test-based strategies to inform patient care.
• Expanded recommendations for provision of dental care to both patients with COVID-19 and patients without COVID-19.
“Dental settings should balance the need to provide necessary services while minimizing risk to patients and dental healthcare personnel. Dental health care personnel should stay informed and regularly consult with the state or local health department for region-specific information and recommendations, and should monitor trends in local case counts and deaths, especially for populations at higher risk for severe illness.” Review the full guidance here: https://bit.ly/2xwDYQ4. Please send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
***ADHA’s Task Force on Return to Work is currently reviewing this guidance and updates to ADHA’s Interim Guidance on Return to work will be available soon.***
NEW ACTION ALERT
May 14, 2020
New Action Alert! The newly released Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act is a $3 trillion proposal that includes hazard pay for essential workers, increased worker safety provisions and more. ADHA has launched a campaign to amplify the voices of dental hygienists behind this effort. We are so grateful for each of you helping advance these important advocacy efforts. Go to the Action Center to learn more, be a part of ADHA’s Congressional outreach and share with your colleagues. https://bit.ly/2LzF4Op
ADHA Interim Guidance for Returning to Work
April 30, 2020
ADHA has released their Return to Work Interim Guidance.
NEW ACTION ALERT: PPE
April 23, 2020
Let’s keep it going! As of this morning, more than 15,000 of you have sent a message to your governor expressing the need to protect the health and safety of dental hygienists and patients.This ADHA campaign focuses on ensuring appropriate PPE is available when we get back to work, as well as continuing to postpone non-emergency procedures until it’s safe to do so. If you haven’t participated yet, it just takes a minute. Spread the word!
ADHA UPDATE: ADHA Task Force on Return to Work
During this time of crisis ADHA is steadfast in advocating to protect the health and safety of dental hygienists, their patients, colleagues, families, and the communities they live and work in. Understandably, there continue to be many unanswered questions about how to safely return to work, and the need for and availability of appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE). It is critical that we reach out to the dental hygiene community and utilize the expertise of our members to gather data to inform evidence-based guidance to the ADHA Board of Trustees on our decisions moving forward. To this end, ADHA has announced the formation of the, “ADHA Task Force on Return to Work” (Task Force).
The ADHA Task Force on Return to Work will review available COVID-19 guidance documents and policies, including but not limited to information from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Occupational and Safety Health Act (OSHA), and American Dental Association (ADA). The Task Force will provide recommendations to the ADHA Board of Trustees, including guidance for dental hygienists on returning to work.
A dedicated email address has been set up so that members of the dental hygiene community can provide input to the Task Force at email@example.com.
NEW ACTION ALERT: Continued Postponement
April 21, 2020
Many states are now preparing to reopen the economy, including some dental offices, as early as this week. We need to unite and ensure our governors step up to support dental hygienists and ensure their access to appropriate PPE should their employer dental offices reopen. In order to protect the dental team and patients, ADHA continues to support the recommendations from CDC in recommending dental facilities postpone elective procedures, surgeries, and non-urgent dental visits, and prioritize urgent and emergency visits and procedures now and for the coming several weeks. Governors need to hear your concerns about returning to work. ADHA has launched a new advocacy campaign to ask governors to declare only emergency dental care be provided until we can ensure it is safe to return and alert our governors of the need for and concerns regarding the availability of appropriate PPE.
NYS on PAUSE Extension
March 29, 2020
The CARES Act
March 27, 2020
President Trump signed the $2 trillion economic stimulus bill passed by Congress – CARES Act. Here are some of the provisions that may be helpful to dental hygienists, See also IRS Coronavirus Tax Relief website for additional information.
NYS Seeking Help
March 24, 2020
ACTION ALERT UPDATE
March 24, 2020
More than 49,000 messages have been sent to U.S. Congressional leaders from dental hygiene advocates in less than 24 hours! If you haven’t already, visit the Action Center now to urge legislators to include dental hygienists in the relief.
Check out the latest video from ADHA President, Matt Crespin, MPH, RDH with an update on the ADHA Congressional advocacy campaign:
March 20, 2020
On March 20, NYS issued guidance on the new NY PAUSE executive order that all non-essential businesses statewide must close in-office personnel functions effective Sunday, March 22 at 8 p.m. The guidance defines essential to include “doctors and emergency dental,” among others.
A Message from the Long Island Dental Hygienists’ Association
March 19, 2020
ADHA wants you to know that they are here to support us as dental hygiene professionals. As updates are changing rapidly, it is more important than ever that we, as the only professional association representing dental hygienists, work together to provide accurate information regarding COVID-19.
It’s important to note that as a national professional association, ADHA does not have the authority to mandate dental office closures. They are, however, actively raising our collective professional concerns with federal agencies as they consider the best course of action to maintain the health and safety of dental hygienists and their patients, while addressing critical oral health needs.
Please use and share these resources:
- ADHA has issued an interim COVID-19 policy.
- ADHA has posted FAQ’s on COVID-19.
- ADHA has launched a national advocacy campaign urging governors to use their authority over state commerce to limit dental practices to emergency procedures only at this time. Please join us in this effort by: clicking on this link to send this important message today.
- A dedicated email for your COVID-19 questions and concerns: RDHCovidInfo@adha.net.
An Update on COVID-19 Federal Advocacy Efforts
March 19, 2020 – 4:30pm CST
President Trump signed into law March 18, HR 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. We wanted to take a moment to provide some explanation of how this potentially affects employees, including the dental hygiene community.Of critical interest to our members, HR 6201 includes paid leave provisions for certain employees affected by the coronavirus. Here is a link to a detailed summary of the emergency paid leave provisions in HR 6201:
H.R. 6201, FAMILIES FIRST CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE ACT – Emergency Paid Sick Leave
Importantly, businesses with fewer than 50 employees can qualify for a narrow exemption if the Department of Labor determines that providing these benefits would jeopardize the viability of the business. Further, the Department of Labor has the authority to issue regulations exempting health care workers and emergency responders from the paid sick and family leave provisions.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recommendations on elective surgery and procedures issued March 18, are particularly strong in their recommendation on dental procedures. Indeed, dental is singled out for particular emphasis. The CMS recommendations caution that:
“Dental procedures use PPE and have one of the highest risks of transmission due to the close proximity of the healthcare provider to the patient. To reduce the risk of spread and to preserve PPE, we are recommending that all non-essential dental exams and procedures be postponed until further notice.”
Another prong of the multi-faceted ADHA effort on behalf of its members will include exploring the inclusion of language in one of the future coronavirus relief bills that employees who are unable to work because they provide services that the government has recommended be “postponed until further notice” be compensated for the time they are unable to work. In addition, anticipating the efforts of organized dentistry, even before HR 6201 was enacted, ADHA President Crespin wrote to the President, the Speaker of the House, and the Senate Majority Leader urging that “dental hygienists are not prevented from receiving needed coronavirus-related employee benefits solely because they work in the health care field or because they often work on a part time basis or in a small office setting.”
ADHA is indeed at work on behalf of its members during this national public health and economic crisis. We will continue to share information with the dental hygiene community as it becomes available.
Matt’s Letter to President Trump, Speaker Pelosi, & Majority Leader McConnell
March 18, 2020
ADHA President Matt Crespin, MPH, RDH, sent a letter to President Trump, Speaker Pelosi, and Majority Leader McConnell to encourage the federal government to consider dental hygienists and other oral health care providers as they develop targeted relief measures and employee benefits. The letter further encourage the federal government to “ensure that dental hygienists are not prevented from receiving needed coronavirus-related employee benefits solely because they work in the health care field or because they often work on a part time basis or in a small office setting.”