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Letters: Medical screenings

September 07, 2015 The ADA Council on Dental Practices proposal to incorporate medical screening methods such as HIV, HPV, diabetic A1c and hypertension into patient examinations is a bad idea. First, screenings are not without liability risk. Second, screenings are best done by the health care professionals that treat the disease. To expect dentists to test for diseases outside our scope of practice and training borders on unethical practice. It would be like expecting physicians to check for cavities as part of a doctor visit. Third, there is no mechanism to properly compensate dentists for the expense that these screenings would entail. I would encourage CDP to reject this proposal. As dentists, we have enough regulatory pressures as it is. Why would the ADA endeavor to increase the burden by adding a whole host of medical screenings to the mix? It's not good for dentists and it's not the best way to do it for patients either.

Wesley A. Harper, D.D.S.
Phoenix