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New resource for member dentists on managing professional risks launched

October 25, 2018

By David Burger

Dr. Van Scoyoc
Dr. Van Scoyoc 
Dentists take risks each and every day, and identifying the risks that exist in a dental practice is the first step to effectively managing them.

That is the reason why the ADA Council on Dental Practice has unveiled the new Guidelines for Practice Success module on Managing Professional Risks, housed at ADA.org/GPSrisk within the ADA Center for Professional Success.

The module discusses some of the preventive steps dentists can take to protect themselves and their practices in the face of risk.

“Everything dentists do requires them to be aware of — and manage — some type of risk,” said Dr. Stacey Van Scoyoc, an Illinois dentist and chair of the ADA Council on Dental Practice. “We manage risks when we communicate with patients; manage the financial aspects of the business; hire and supervise staff; conduct or oversee marketing activities; and ensure that everything done onsite complies with all of the federal, state and local regulations whether it relates to actually doing dentistry or not.

ADA Managing Risk logo “Once dentists know what the risks are, they can develop plans, systems and protocols to reduce the likelihood that one of those possible risks will become a reality that can irrevocably damage their ability to practice, professional reputation or financial stability,” said Dr. Van Scoyoc. “The Guidelines for Practice Success module on Managing Professional Risks is an extremely valuable resource that will help dentists navigate many of the issues we face every day.”

Sixth in the Guidelines for Practice Success suite of practice management resources, the module offers up-to-date original resources, such as checklists, tip sheets and FAQs, created specifically for this project and designed to make it easier for ADA members to mitigate their potential liability. Some of the topics covered by the resource include standards of care; informed consent; chart entries; audits; records; retention schedules for other business documents; patient referrals; documenting medical necessity; practice website liability; and more.

Led by the Council on Dental Practice, dental practice management consultants and content authorities developed the Guidelines for Practice Success suite of resources via a consensus-driven process rooted in well-established practices designed to make the patient’s well-being the preeminent concern when providing patient care, Dr. Van Scoyoc said.

“We believe this information will be a valuable tool to dentists at all stages of their careers and in all types of practice,” Dr. Van Scoyoc said. “Each year, the ADA receives hundreds of calls from dentists asking how to reduce the different types of risk associated with practicing dentistry and the Council on Dental Practice is constantly working to help member dentists and this new module is one example of the Council’s commitment to helping members succeed.”