Republican lawmakers and President Donald Trump continued their efforts to win over conservative lawmakers ahead of a planned vote on the American Health Care Act, expected today. Late-hour negotiations focused on eliminating the Affordable Care Act's essential health benefits, which conservatives say will lower premiums, but such a provision could threaten the legislation in the Senate.
Massachusetts state Senate Majority Leader Harriette Chandler is seeking passage of a bill to create a midlevel class of dental professional known as dental therapists, dental hygienists with additional training allowing them to perform routine procedures, such as filling cavities. Supporters say authorizing this role could expand access to care for people on Medicaid, those in less-populated areas of the state and the elderly while reducing preventable oral health emergency department visits, while a competing measure backed by dentists is narrower in scope and would require direct supervision by a dentist.
Public health officials in Wisconsin's Dane County have published a report on emergency department and urgent care visits for dental pain in 2015, putting the number at 4,000 for the county. Access to care is lower for people of color, the poor, and the elderly and disabled, who frequently do not have dental insurance or the ability to obtain affordable preventive care, according to Dr. David Gundersen, president of the Oral Health Coalition of Dane County, but a local partnership has made some strides in reducing utilization of emergency care for oral health issues.
Ninety-nine percent of Oregonians live within 30 minutes of a dental care provider, according to a study commissioned by the Oregon Dental Association, which concluded that geography is not a significant barrier to care for those in rural and tribal areas. Instead, the report argues the main barrier to care is cost, followed by fear and inconvenience, respectively.
Stanley Marable, a dentist practicing in Valdosta, Ga., was sentenced to serve two years and three months in prison and has paid restitution of $789,841 to the state Medicaid program after pleading guilty to health care fraud. Marable was convicted of submitting Medicaid claims for unprovided teeth extractions between January 2011 and September 2013, court records show.
Gain the Most In Demand Skills in Health Care GW's School of Medicine Health Sciences connects you with leading authorities in policy and health care in Washington, D.C. With programs in clinical research, health care quality and regulatory affairs, you gain the most in demand skills. Learn More
Use of sonic and rotating-oscillating power toothbrushes, combined with abrasive whitening toothpaste, significantly increases dentin loss with long-term use compared with manual toothbrushes, according to a study reported in PLOS ONE. The toothbrush-toothpaste-tooth interaction may explain an increase in the number of older people presenting with exposed root surfaces and noncarious cervical lesions, according to study authors, who note that use of power brushes without toothpaste does not significantly increase dentin loss.
Many people, including those who took good care of their teeth when younger, face oral health challenges as they age because of a variety of factors including: greater vulnerability to infections and cancers of the mouth, reduced dexterity that makes dental hygiene more challenging, lack of focus on hygiene as a result of dementia or Alzheimer's, transportation issues and lack of coverage for dental procedures through Medicare. Dentists say many seniors live with infections and pain for years, often contributing to health problems elsewhere in the body, and they say such problems are particularly acute for low-income seniors.
Join Kimberly Lear of Inlay Insights and NADP on March 28 at 2 p.m. Eastern for Building Standout Experiences in the Age of Empowerment, a 60-minute educational webinar. Leveraging the client experience is more important than ever. Supported with cutting-edge research and category-leading case studies, this program will take a deep dive into the evolving expectations of today's empowered clients. Registration for this webinar is available through the Knowledge Center. Invest in the professional development of your company with a 2017 Webinar Series Subscription Package that includes this webinar and all 2017 educational presentations. Check the NADP Knowledge Center for details.
CONVERGE 2017 early-bird registration is now open and continues through April 28 via the online registration system in the NADP Knowledge Center. Early Bird Registration is $1,095 per member and $1,995 per non-member. CONVERGE is Sept. 25-28 at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis. Visit the CONVERGE microsite for frequent program updates.