University of Maryland School of Dentistry Offers New Certificate in Oral Health Science Program for Non-Dental Health Care Providers

Posted on June 2, 2020

Graduate level program designed to improve overall patient outcomes

The University of Maryland School of Dentistry (UMSOD) is proud to announce an innovative new program for nurses, physician assistants, and other non-dental healthcare providers seeking advanced training in oral health and dental medicine. The curriculum is designed to help clinicians recognize and manage oral health infections, diseases, and systemic conditions to more effectively and efficiently improve overall health for their patients.

“By equipping health care professionals to detect oral conditions, particularly common oral diseases, such as periodontal (gum) diseases, we are equipping them to improve patient outcomes,” says Mary Beth Aichelmann-Reidy, DDS, chief of UMSOD’s Periodontics Division in the Department of Advanced Oral Sciences and Therapeutics. “The recognition of oral diseases and oral manifestations of systemic diseases is integral to health promotion and disease prevention.”

“It’s an exciting time,” adds Mark A. Reynolds, DDS, PhD, dean and professor, UMSOD. “There is a growing recognition that chronic oral infections can contribute to poorer systemic health and to inferior patient health care outcomes.  This training will help bridge the gap in management of oral diseases and general medical healthcare, providing an important opportunity to advance overall health and well-being”

UMSOD’s new Certificate in Oral Health Science Program is designed as a post-baccalaureate program for non-dental healthcare professionals. The five course, 13-credit curriculum blends online instruction with face-to-face clinical experiences at the Universities of Shady Grove, in Rockville, MD. Designed for the working professional, the course can be completed part-time in less than two years.

Because professionals with expertise in oral and dental medicine will play an increasingly greater role on healthcare teams in advancing improved patient care outcomes, health practitioners will be trained in competencies central to the management of prevalent infections, diseases, and systemic conditions affecting the oral cavity. The training prepares practitioners to become leaders in emerging healthcare delivery models building on multi-disciplinary treatment paradigms; promotes knowledge and expertise, and provides participants with the communication and management tools needed within the integrative scope of interprofessional health care management.

Highlights of UMSOD’s innovative Certificate in Oral Health Science Program include:

• Designed for the working health care professional, the program can be completed part-time and within 18 months.

• The student will learn how to incorporate oral health services into care management.

• Participants will learn how to evaluate and recognize acute and chronic oral conditions and diseases.

• Enrollees will gain an understanding of the impact of oral disease on health care delivery and the overall well-being and health of patients.

• Students will be trained in oral dental radiology and will be prepared for dental radiology certification.

• This graduate certificate program will provide trained healthcare professionals with the tools necessary for better communication and collaboration within healthcare teams and improve patient care outcomes through oral health care management.

The program includes five courses:

• Oral Infection and Disease: Foundations for Recognition

• Contemporary Oral Therapeutics in Oral Medicine and Dentistry

• Complex Interplay: The Relationship between Oral Health and Systemic Disease

• Prevention and Oral Health Promotion

• Clinical Practicum in Oral Health Care Delivery and Oral Dental Radiology

About University of Maryland School of Dentistry

The University of Maryland School of Dentistry, the world’s first dental college, offers superlative educational programs in oral health. As one of six professional schools and an interdisciplinary Graduate School on the University of Maryland, Baltimore’s 71-acre campus, it is part of a thriving academic health center that combines groundbreaking biomedical research and exceptional patient care. The school is Maryland’s predominant provider of comprehensive and emergency oral health services. For more information, visit www.dental.umaryland.edu.

Planmeca USA Launches Newly-Redesigned Planmeca Romexis® 6.0

Posted on June 1, 2020

New Version of Industry-Leading Software Provides Enhanced Usability with Additional Tools and Features

Planmeca USA, a leading manufacturer of dental imaging and CAD/CAM equipment, today announced the launch of Planmeca Romexis 6.0, the latest version of the highly-successful all-in-one dental imaging software, Planmeca Romexis. The new version provides clinicians enhanced usability and offers a wide variety of tools and functions seen for the first time.

The newly-redesigned Planmeca Romexis 6.0 software features an intuitive navigation with fewer clicks and a customizable user interface to allow for a streamlined workflow. In addition, the software introduces flexible Workflow Wizards that take the guesswork out of complicated workflows such as implant training and smile design. The software guides the user to perform tasks through buttons, actions and tutorial videos to achieve treatment planning success.

The new version offers advantages like eliminating the border between 2D and 3D imaging, giving users access to all 2D, 3D and CAD/CAM images and videos in a unified interface and database. Romexis 6.0 now allows for the dual-screen viewing of 2D images and 3D images with detachable pop-up windows, and all images captured or scanned can be started from the same view with one simple click. This makes the importing and exporting data process even more efficient and effortless.

“Romexis 6.0 is unlike any other software on the market. With new features and improved functionality, clinicians can manage their workflows more seamlessly than ever before,” said Ed McDonough, president at Planmeca USA. “By being an open software platform, Romexis 6.0 offers versatility and flexibility for practices worldwide, giving them the tools they need to provide their patients with premium care.”

Planmeca Romexis® Smile Design, the digital smile design software, now features AI-based automatic image cropping and orientation in addition to enhanced photorealistic simulations. The upgraded Planmeca Romexis®Implant Guide now offers a virtual tooth extraction feature, and the unique Romexis® Dental PACS module allows image archiving from 3rd party devices and treatment planning features to support multi-site clinic operations.

The open software platform is compatible with both Mac and Window devices and provides user scalability options for a stand-alone to larger enterprise installations. The software releases May 26, 2020.

To learn more about Romexis 6.0 and its capabilities, visit info.planmecausa.com/romexis6.

About Planmeca USA

Planmeca USA is a subsidiary of Planmeca, the largest privately held company in the dental equipment market and one of the industry’s leading manufacturers of dental X-rays and core equipment. With a North American office located in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, and international headquarters in Helsinki, Finland, Planmeca is well established in high-tech dental markets and currently serves 120 countries worldwide. For more information, visit planmeca.com/na.


CDC Guidance for Dental Settings Echoes ADA Guidance

Posted on June 1, 2020

Organizations Recommend How to Move Forward With Dental Care During Pandemic

The American Dental Association (ADA) welcomes the release of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s recently updated Guidance for Dental Settings, noting it is very similar to science-based guidance issued a month ago by the ADA. Both guidances describe how dental professionals, building upon existing infection control measures, can help protect patients and the dental team when re-engaging in providing the full range of oral health care.

“Oral health is an important part of overall health,” according to ADA President Chad Gehani, D.D.S. “Resuming regular dental visits are important because treatment, as well as prevention of dental disease, helps keep people healthy. The guidances from the ADA and the CDC give dental professionals the information they need to practice as safely as possible.”

The CDC guidance provides detailed patient management and facility consideration information for before, during and after dental appointments, which is in close alignment with the ADA’s Return to Work Interim Guidance Toolkit. CDC and ADA recommendations include:

     • Request that dental staff call patients prior to the scheduled appointment to ask questions about their current health status.

     • Advise patients to wear a face covering when entering the dental practice.

     • Limit the number of people who accompany a patient to the appointment. If possible, the patient should make the visit alone.

     • Assess all patients upon arrival; temperature checks may be completed.

     • Remove items in office waiting rooms such as toys or reading material to limit potential transmission through high touch surfaces.

     • Encourage social distancing practices by minimizing the number of patients in the waiting room by spacing appointments thoughtfully and perhaps by asking patients to wait in their car until the dental staff is ready to treat the patient.

     • Advise dental staff members to wear additional personal protective equipment (PPE) as appropriate, such as surgical masks or N95 masks, full face shields or goggles with side shields to ensure an environment that is as safe and healthy as possible for patients and the dental team.

     • Place hand sanitizer generously around the office for use, and ensure surfaces are cleaned regularly.

The CDC’s updated dental settings guidance offers additional recommendations such as how patients can be positioned in the dental chair during appointments and waiting 15 minutes before disinfecting patient treatment rooms after use.

The ADA guidance also includes ways dentists and hygienists can reduce aerosols such as:

     • hand scaling when cleaning teeth rather than using ultrasonic scaling,

     • use of high velocity suction whenever possible and

     • use of rubber dental dams whenever possible

It is important to note that both the CDC and ADA guidances are science-based recommendations and not regulations. States control what procedures are allowed to be provided, largely through their licensing boards. For example, in Ohio, the state dental board has chosen to refer dentists to the CDC and ADA for Personal Protection Equipment and infection control recommendations, but not what procedures can be provided in Ohio’s dental practices.

According to the CDC’s guidance, “Dental health care professionals should regularly consult their state dental boards and state or local health departments for current local information for requirements specific to their jurisdictions.”

“I am pleased to see dental practices reopening to provide patients with the dental care they need,“ Dr. Gehani said. “The longer patients go without preventive care and treatment for early forms of dental disease, the more likely their untreated disease will progress. The safety of patients, dentists and dental team members has been and always will be ADA’s utmost concern.”

About the ADA

The not-for-profit ADA is the nation's largest dental association, representing 163,000 dentist members. The premier source of oral health information, the ADA has advocated for the public's health and promoted the art and science of dentistry since 1859. The ADA's state-of-the-art research facilities develop and test dental products and materials that have advanced the practice of dentistry and made the patient experience more positive. The ADA Seal of Acceptance long has been a valuable and respected guide to consumer dental care products. The monthly The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) is the ADA's flagship publication and the best-read scientific journal in dentistry. For more information about the ADA, visit ADA.org. For more information on oral health, including prevention, care and treatment of dental disease, visit the ADA's consumer website MouthHealthy.org.

AAID Develops Patient Guide for What to Expect at Your Dentist Appointment During COVID-19

Posted on May 28, 2020

AAID dentists provide resource to help people prepare and take precautions for their next dentist appointment

As the country gradually emerges from lockdown, the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID) has released a new resource to help people prepare for their next dentist appointment.

The checklist What to Expect: Going to the Dentist After Stay-at-Home Order is Lifted illustrates the safety measures and protocol to expect as dentist offices re-open for all types of visits and preventative procedures.

The resource is a collaboration with AAID dentists who own practices across the nation and have followed CDC infection control procedures for years. They are now implementing extra steps to protect patients and staff.

"As my practice begins to re-open for routine check-ups, the health and safety of patients and staff is of highest priority," explains Grace Chung, DDS, "It's important that we let patients know ahead of their appointment what precautions will be in place to reduce the spread of COVID-19 so they can rest assured we're doing everything possible to keep them safe. "

The downloadable resource covers what to expect before, during, and after an appointment. It serves as a reminder of what to bring and not to bring to your appointment and includes space to write down questions for your dentist.

Since the guide covers general new measures, you should still contact your own dentist to find out about their re-opening plans, if they haven't already contacted you.

Want to know how to prepare for your next dentist appointment? Download the checklist here.

Interested in learning how to keep your mouth healthy during COVID-19? Download the AAID's The Ultimate Guide to Dental Health During COVID-19 here.

About the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID)

Founded in 1951, the AAID was the first organization in the United States dedicated to developing and improving dental implants. Today, after 68 years, the AAID continues to be the leading organization of dentists devoted to providing dental implant treatment solutions. Their credentialing program reinforces that these individuals are at the highest standards of competency in the profession. For more information, contact the American Academy of Implant Dentistry at info@aaid.com or call 312-335-1550.

Join Pacific Dental Services® CEO, Stephen E. Thorne, IV, and Envista CEO, Amir Aghdaei, in New Webinar about COVID-19 and the Evolving Landscape of Dentistry

Posted on May 27, 2020

Industry leaders will discuss best practices on navigating the new normal

Leading dental support organization Pacific Dental Services (PDS®) announces its Founder & CEO, Stephen E. Thorne, IV, will join Amir Aghdaei, CEO of Envista (NVST), in a new webinarCOVID-19 and the Evolving Landscape of Dentistry. Envista, a newly public company representing more than 30 dental brands including KaVo, Kerr, Nobel Biocare, and Ormco, helps dental professionals deliver the best possible patient care. During the webinar, which takes place Thursday, May 28 at 1:00 PST/4:00 PM EST, Mr. Thorne and Mr. Aghdaei will discuss the impact the Coronavirus pandemic has had on the dental industry, safety in the dental practice, the evolving landscape of dentistry, and more. During the sought-after event, which will be moderated by Joseph Feldsien, SVP, Clinical Technology Enablement at Pacific Dental Services, the two leaders will provide the audience with key insights about how they’ve navigated their organizations during this unprecedented health crisis. Attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions during the interactive session. Mark your calendar to join this webinar. To register in advance, click HERE to attend the event on Thursday, May 28 at 1:00 PST/4:00 PM EST.

Due to COVID-19, dentistry leaders have had to quickly develop strategies that best position their organizations, while also being thoughtful about the future.  “The Coronavirus pandemic is like nothing else we’ve seen and dentistry will be forever changed,” said Mr. Thorne of PDS, which supports over 800 dental practices in 22 states. “It’s more important than ever that we work together as we shape the future of dentistry, and I’m pleased we’re able to discuss these important issues in this forum.”

Pacific Dental Services partnered with Envista for the implementation of Cone Beam Computed Tomography (CBCT) for its supported dental practices. Cone Beam Computed Tomography is an innovative imaging technology that provides clinicians with 3D views of their patients’ dental anatomy. This monumental achievement allows the dentists utilizing 3D imaging with a state-of-the-art diagnostic tool and allows patients to be more engaged and see what their dentists see – a more comprehensive view of their teeth, oral, and maxillofacial region. The extraordinary visibility of 3D imaging will lead to a greater understanding of dental conditions and treatment plan options. Pacific Dental Services’ primary purpose is to support dentists so they can create Healthier, Happier Patients® and today’s announcement is part of the DSO’s commitment to patient-centric care.

About Pacific Dental Services® 

Founded in 1994, Pacific Dental Services (PDS) is one of the country’s leading dental support organizations, providing supported autonomy that enables dentists to concentrate on clinical excellence and the highest levels of cost-effective comprehensive patient care. PDS originated the Private Practice+® model to enable dentists to focus on their passion: serving patients. PDS also pioneered the concept of Modern Dentistry so that dentists are equipped to combine advances in the latest technology with the best operational practices and procedures, highly skilled support staff and a commitment to ongoing training and education. PDS continues to grow, with more than 800 supported dental offices across the United States and plans to expand into several new markets. PDS has been on the Inc. 5000 list of the fastest growing private companies in America 14 times. PDS supported dentists aim to be the provider of choice in all the markets they serve and to develop Patients for Life™.

For more information, visit us at http://www.pacificdentalservices.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PacificDentalServices/ 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/293541/life/ 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/pacificdental 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/PacificDentalTV


Pain doesn’t take a holiday: Dental opioids study points to need for better prescribing

Posted on May 26, 2020

Though non-opioid painkillers can be just as effective, patients having dental procedures just before weekends and holidays are more likely to fill prescriptions for opioids

As dentists and their teams across America get back to their regular schedules after a sharp COVID-19-related reduction, a new study shows a key opportunity to reduce the use of opioid painkillers by their patients.

The analysis of four years’ worth of data from two million patients show that those who had dental procedures on a Friday or a day before a holiday were much more likely to fill a prescription for an opioid than other patients.

Teens and young adults were the most likely to get opioids, which were likely prescribed in order to get them through the weekend or holiday break without needing to contact the dentist for pain care.

One in five of the patients, all between the ages of 13 and 64, filled a prescription for an opioid, even though non-opioid pain medications are equally effective at controlling pain and have lower risks.

Those who had pre-weekend or pre-holiday procedures were 27% more likely to pick up an opioid prescription. If they were teens or young adults, they were 43% more likely than older patients to do so.

The new findings, reported in the Journal of the American Dental Association by a team from the University of Michigan, build on prior work showing overprescribing of opioids by dentists with no increase in pain relief or patient satisfaction.

The rate of weekend and holiday opioid prescription-filling by young people is especially troubling because of previous work showing that those who get opioids after getting their wisdom teeth out are nearly three times as likely to keep refilling the prescription long after their mouths should have healed.

“Variation in opioid prescription fills may put some patients at increased risk,” says Caitlin Priest, the U-M Medical School student who led the analysis as part of the Michigan Opioid Prescribing Engagement Network team. “Now that we understand that dental opioid prescription fills were increased on Fridays and before holidays, we can create and disseminate best practices to avoid unnecessary prescribing.”

Just over half of the patients whose records were analyzed had their dental procedure on an emergency basis. But the rest were scheduled – one-fifth of them on Fridays and the days before holidays.  

Half of the patients who filled an opioid prescription had had scheduled surgical tooth extractions, but the pre-weekend and pre-holiday increase was seen across all 11 dental procedures studied.

This suggests multiple opportunities to reduce unneeded opioid prescribing, says Romesh Nalliah, M.H.C.M., D.D.S., the associate dean for patient services at the U-M School of Dentistry and a member of the study team. He notes that patients may seek Friday and pre-holiday appointments for their scheduled procedures to avoid missing work as they recover.

“The significance of our study is that, with the help of big data, it begins to unpack potentially harmful opioid prescribing trends that were not previously understood,” he says. “In the event that we have particular concerns about a given case or patient, we can more deliberately book surgeries when we are available to follow-up."

The senior author of the paper, Chad Brummett, M.D., co-directs Michigan OPEN, which has published evidence-based guidelines for opioid prescribing for acute pain caused by many types of procedures and operations. He is also director of pain research in the Department of Anesthesiology at Michigan Medicine, U-M’s academic medical center.

The guidelines say that for dental extractions, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications and over-the-counter pain relievers should be sufficient for pain control.

Other studies have shown that educating patients about the risks of taking opioids, and the proper use of NSAIDs and other pain relievers, before their procedure can reduce opioid use without increasing their pain scores.

Michigan OPEN has created two free brochures for dental practices to give to patients – one about proper use of non-opioid pain medications, the other about appropriate use and risks from opioids. They are available at https://michigan-open.org/patient-community-education/.

Reference: JADA 2020:151(6):388-398, doi:10.1016/j.adaj.2020.03.014 The paper is featured on the cover of the journal’s June issue.

Regenerative Medicine Center Led by School of Dentistry Gets $31.4M

Posted on May 22, 2020

A $31.4 million federal grant will allow a regenerative medicine resource center led by the School of Dentistry to continue its important research into the restoration of dental, oral and craniofacial tissues lost to disease, injury or congenital disorders.

The five-year grant from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research is the largest research award ever received by the school. It extends funding for the Michigan-Pittsburgh-Wyss Regenerative Medicine Resource Center, which was established in 2017 with an $11.7 million startup grant, also from NIDCR.

The resource center’s leadership team includes researchers from the University of Michigan, University of Pittsburgh and the Wyss Institute at Harvard University.

It includes U-M collaborators from the Medical School, School of Public Health, College of Pharmacy, College of Engineering, the Office of Technology Transfer and the Michigan Institute for Clinical and Health Research, as well as contributors from private companies across the country.

In its first three years, the center has brought together a multidisciplinary team of scientists, engineers, clinicians, and regulatory and technology commercialization experts who evaluate regenerative medicine projects submitted by academic, for-profit and non-profit researchers.

Regenerative medicine investigates how to regenerate damaged cells, tissues or organs to their full function, such as finding ways for the body to heal wounds faster or to repair bone that has been damaged. Research strategies often integrate engineering and biology, and can incorporate biomaterials, biologics and drug delivery, cellular therapies, medical devices or combinations of those.

The Michigan-Pittsburgh-Wyss Center currently funds 13 interdisciplinary translational projects. It contributes scientific expertise and also helps guide the researchers and their new technologies through steps such as Food and Drug Administration requirements, pre-clinical studies, market analyses and commercialization strategies.

The new grant will help advance the projects to the point where investigators receive FDA approval to begin clinical trials in patients for their new products and-or procedures, with the ultimate goal being their widespread use in the treatment of patients.

David Kohn, professor of dentistry and lead principal investigator for the resource center, said the new grant allows the center to expand on its early successes involving a wide variety of research projects.

“We are excited to advance to the next stage of this unique program and pleased that the NIDCR has the confidence in us to invest further in this initiative,” said Kohn, who also is a professor of biomedical engineering in the College of Engineering and Medical School. “It allows us to use the structure and processes we have developed so far to guide the projects to successful translation for patients and-or commercialization.

“We have nurtured projects related to many areas of critical need in the dental, oral and craniofacial space, and have helped many projects advance along the translational pipeline, which is complex, time-consuming and costly.”

Dentistry Dean Laurie McCauley said the new grant from the NIDCR, part of the National Institutes of Health, is a significant milestone in the School of Dentistry’s longstanding commitment to scientific research. She noted that the school has been a national and world leader in dental and craniofacial research, dating to its early days after being founded in 1875.

“We are pleased to partner with the NIDCR and the other universities in this robust and ground-breaking project,” McCauley said. “To be leading this multidisciplinary group engaged in the latest regenerative medicine research is a testament to the quality of our faculty and researchers. It illustrates our commitment to advance and lead transformative science.”

Kohn said 90 percent of projects in the research center’s portfolio have been issued a patent or have a pending patent application; 80 percent have had submissions to the FDA in efforts toward clinical clearance or approval; and 100 percent have corporate engagement.

Several new companies have been formed, others have received equity financing, some have advanced to clinical trials on sister technologies, and yet others have received add-on funding.

“The impact of these efforts will be a catalysis of translation never previously achieved in an NIH extramural program, resulting in the transformation of dental, oral and craniofacial medicine,” Kohn said.

The projects funded so far by the research center include many types of oral and craniofacial research. One is centered on a patented bone adhesive designed to aid in the treatment of fractured bone and to more efficiently stabilize dental implants. Another is pursuing gene therapy to provide relief from dry mouth in patients whose salivary function has been damaged by radiotherapy for head and neck cancers.

William Giannobile, co-principal investigator and William K. and Mary Anne Najjar Professor of Dentistry, said this initiative is the first of its kind to aim to truly transform dental regenerative medicine to advance patient care.

“There have been many unsuccessful attempts of industry bringing regenerative technologies to advance clinical care, but this partnership offers a novel structure to leverage synergies between industry and academic scientists to realize clinical adoption,” said Giannobile, chair of the Department of Periodontics and Oral Medicine and a professor of biomedical engineering.

Other principal investigators with Kohn and Giannobile are:

     • Charles Sfeir, associate dean for research and the director of the Center for Craniofacial Regeneration at the University of Pittsburgh.

     • William Wagner, director of the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine and a professor of surgery, bioengineering and chemical engineering at the University of Pittsburgh.

     • David Mooney, professor of bioengineering at Harvard University and core faculty member at the Wyss Institute.

Mutsumi Yoshida, managing director of the center’s U-M site at the dental school, coordinates program needs with Patrick Cantini, a program administrator at the University of Pittsburgh’s McGowan Institute.

The Michigan-Pittsburgh-Wyss Regenerative Medicine Resource Center is one of the two national Resource Centers established by the NIDCR in 2017 through its Dental Oral and Craniofacial Tissue Regeneration Consortium initiative. The other is the Center for Dental, Oral and Craniofacial Tissue and Organ Regeneration, a collaboration among several universities in California.

Next-Gen Nano Technologies to Tackle Infection and Diagnose Disease

Posted on May 22, 2020

Antibacterial technologies to develop novel antiviral surfaces will help stop the spread of viral diseases.

Next-gen nano technologies that can prevent infection and diagnose disease are set to transform the medical industry as this important UniSA research is awarded more than $2 million dollars under the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) 2021 Investigator Grants.

Led by international expert in biomedical and advanced materials, UniSA’s Prof Krasi Vasilev, the $2,738,220 NHMRC grant will help continue his vital work in anti-bacterial technologies for a range of medical devices, and build on his established successes in diagnostics and prognostics of diseases.

Prof Vasilev’s exemplary work in antibacterial technologies has seen him collaborate and conceive a range of innovations to improve the health of people around the world.

Notable commercial projects include a new non-invasive device for diagnostics of bladder cancer (with Motherson Innovations) and novel orthopaedic implants enhanced with antibacterial surfaces that substantially reduce the rate of infections associated with these devices (with Corin Group).

This work is delivering tangible outcomes for patients, medical professionals, and the Australian economy.

“Innovative technologies are the key to solving pressing medical and biological challenges, but it is only through valuable collaborations with clinicians and partnerships with industry that we are able to develop these technologies and take them to the next level,” Prof Vasilev says.

“In this NHMRC funded project, we will be using clever nanotechnology to create antibacterial technologies for medical devices, to ensure they can intelligently respond to stimuli, and are highly tailored to particular applications.

“These technologies will be applicable to a wide range of medical devices that are susceptible to bacterial colonisation and lead to deadly infections. Such devices include catheters, orthopaedic and trauma devices, dental implants and heart valves.

“We will also use the expertise of my team in antibacterial technologies to develop novel antiviral surfaces to be used in hospitals and public places to stop the spread of viral diseases. The urgent need for such technologies is demonstrated by the current Covid-19 pandemic.”

The NHMRC funds will also further Prof Vasilev’s ground-breaking work in cancer diagnostics and prognostics, where urine tests are providing non-invasive, cost-effective techniques to diagnose bladder cancer.

“Bladder cancer survivors undergo up to four invasive cystoscopy examinations per year, which are expensive, require hospitalisation and can lead to complications such as sepsis and bleeding. Our technology offers patients patients a much safer, quicker and reliable detection – without additional discomfort, pain and risk of complication.

“We’re looking to extend this technology to diagnosis other diseases – renal disease, prostate and kidney cancers, urinary tract infections as well as rapid and cost-effective detection of viruses such as Covid-19.

“Every day we’re continuing to test a range of nanotechnology-inspired solutions across numerous areas of clinical need, with the goal of helping clinicians more easily diagnose diseases, and most importantly, improve the wellbeing of patients and outcomes of medical procedures.

“To date, we have very promising results. Now, we are taking this to the next level, and we are extremely grateful that our work has been acknowledged and supported by the NHMRC.”

As Dental Practices Resume Operations, ADA Offers Continued Guidance

Posted on May 22, 2020

Recommendations include changes before, during and after appointments to protect patients and dental team

The safety of patients and the dental team has been and always will be American Dental Association’s (ADA) foremost concern. On March 16, the ADA was one of the first national professional health associations to recommend postponement of all but urgent or emergency procedures. This recommendation was intended to help mitigate the spread of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus, conserve essential personal protective equipment (PPE) for medical frontline colleagues, and avoid the need for patients requiring emergency dental treatment to go to overburdened hospital emergency departments.

The ADA’s March 16 recommendation that dentists restrict their practices to all but urgent and emergency care expired on April 30 and was not extended. Oral health is an integral part of overall health. Treatment of dental disease, as well as prevention, is important to help keep people healthy. The longer dental practices remain closed to preventive care and treatment for early forms of dental disease, the more likely that patients’ untreated disease will progress, increasing the complexity and cost for treatment down the road.

After extensive discussion with the ADA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has elevated dentistry to #4 on the FEMA PPE priority list. FEMA recognizes that dentists need PPE in order to treat emergency and near emergency dental cases in their offices rather than patients seeking that care from overburdened hospital emergency departments.

In April, while the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continued to develop recommendations for dental health care professionals, dental practices began reopening in states where government mandates began to lift. The ADA recognized that dentists across the country needed a science-based guidance and proactively formed a task force to do so. The ADA’s interim guidance, released in April, builds upon the already strong infection control protocols in place in dental offices and calls for the highest level of PPE available—masks, goggles and face shield—to help protect patients and the dental team when re-engaging in providing the full range of oral health care.

In addition, the interim guidance includes ways dentists and hygienists can reduce aerosols such as:

     • hand scaling when cleaning teeth rather than using ultrasonic scaling,

     • use of high velocity suction whenever possible and

     • use of rubber dental dams whenever possible

The interim guidance also includes many recommendations covering other patient interactions before, during and after dental appointments. Some considerations for office staff procedural changes and some suggestions for the office set-up are also included.

Before Dental Appointments

     • Dental office staff may call patients and ask questions about their current health status. They may repeat these questions when patients arrive to make sure nothing has changed.

     • Patients may have their temperature taken prior to any procedure.

     • Patients may be asked to bring and wear their own masks upon arrival at the dental office, particularly in states or cities that mandate the wearing of masks in public.

     • Patients may be asked to limit the number of people they bring to the appointment. That could mean leaving children at home under proper supervision or allowing older children who need dental care to go into the office alone while their parent waits outside during their appointment.

During Dental Appointments

     • Patients may be asked to wait outside until the dental team is ready to see them to reduce the number of people in the office and the time patients are around other people.

     • Inside the office, things that many people often touch, like toys or magazines, may have been removed.

     • The office may have hand sanitizer available for patient use

     • Dental staff may wipe down items patients touch, such as pens, clipboards or furniture.

     • The computer keyboard in the dental operatory may have a disposable cover so it can be easily cleaned between patients.

     • The dentist and team members may be using different protective equipment than they’ve used at previous appointments such as different masks, face shields, gowns and goggles.

After Dental Appointments

     • Staff will thoroughly clean the areas where patients have been, using disinfectants that are effective against the virus that causes COVID-19.

This month, the ADA will release a guide and interactive checklist to aid dentists in assessing virus transmission risks in their practices, including factors such as local disease transmission rates, patient-and treatment-specific issues and facility considerations.

The ADA’s interim guidance and assessment guide and checklist for dental practices will be shared with the CDC as well as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The ADA continues to recognize that local or state government decisions regarding closures, including restrictions on elective health care, supersede ADA recommendations.

Guided by the best-available scientific evidence, the ADA will continue to provide recommendations for the health and safety of patients and dental professionals.

About the ADA

The not-for-profit ADA is the nation's largest dental association, representing 163,000 dentist members. The premier source of oral health information, the ADA has advocated for the public's health and promoted the art and science of dentistry since 1859. The ADA's state-of-the-art research facilities develop and test dental products and materials that have advanced the practice of dentistry and made the patient experience more positive. The ADA Seal of Acceptance long has been a valuable and respected guide to consumer dental care products. The monthly The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) is the ADA's flagship publication and the best-read scientific journal in dentistry. For more information about the ADA, visit ADA.org. For more information on oral health, including prevention, care and treatment of dental disease, visit the ADA's consumer website MouthHealthy.org

Dr. Lotardo Inaugurated as New AACD President

Posted on May 22, 2020

AACD President and Accredited Member, Salvatore Lotardo, DDS, AAACD, of Manorville, NY, was inaugurated as President of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD) on May 20, 2020, during the AACD’s first ever virtual annual membership meeting.

Dr. Lotardo’s passion for the AACD began when he joined in October of 2007 and continued as he pursued AACD Accreditation status, for which he achieved in 2014. His AACD involvement includes serving on the Professional Education Committee, the Executive Committee, and the Budget and Finance Committee, and now serving as an Accreditation Examiner for the AACD. He has taught at both the AACD’s annual scientific sessions, as well as in the AACD virtual campus and was the host to an AACD discussion panel called Dentists at Dinner Talking Dentistry where he gave his insights on how to become successful in dentistry.

The AACD is an international professional association comprised of approximately 5,000 dental professionals dedicated to advancing excellence in the art and science of comprehensive cosmetic dentistry and encouraging the highest standards of ethical conduct and responsible patient care.

Dr. Lotardo is currently the owner of Bella Smiles Cosmetic and Family Dentistry in Roslyn, New York, as well as being a member of the American Dental Association, the American Orthodontic Society, and an Adjunct Professor at Briarcliffe College.. In his spare time, he enjoys tennis, playing guitar, and spending time with his family.

The AACD is excited to see what Dr. Lotardo’s presidency will bring to the future of the AACD. His presidential term with the AACD will continue to April 17, 2021 at AACD 2021 Rockies.

For more information about AACD, visit www.aacd.com.

About the AACD

The AACD is the world’s largest non-profit member organization dedicated to advancing excellence in comprehensive oral care, combining art and science to optimally improve dental health, esthetics, and function. Comprised of more than 5,000 cosmetic dental professionals in 70 countries worldwide, the AACD fulfills its mission by offering superior educational opportunities, promoting and supporting the respected Accreditation and Fellowship credentials, serving as a user-friendly and inviting forum for the creative exchange of knowledge and ideas, and providing accurate and useful information to the public and the profession.

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