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ADA leadership answers members’ questions about minimizing risk of COVID-19 transmission

Drs. Marcelo Araujo, Mia Geisinger, Dave Preble discuss interim guidance released by Association

April 08, 2020

By David Burger

 Graphic for ADA COVID-19 Emergency Care Act Webinar

A panel of ADA experts answered members’ questions in a video released April 8 regarding the Association’s interim guidance for minimizing the risk of COVID-19 transmission while performing emergency and urgent dental care.

The experts answered nearly 20 questions that member dentists have asked from throughout the country since the interim guidance was released April 1. The panelists, who all had a hand in developing the guidance, included Dr. Mia Geisinger, chair of the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs and a professor and director of advanced education in periodontology at the University of Alabama School of Dentistry; Dr. Marcelo Araujo, Ph.D., ADA chief science officer and CEO of both the ADA Science & Research Institute and ADA Foundation; and Dr. Dave Preble, senior vice president of the ADA Practice Institute.

Dr. Chad P. Gehani, ADA president, introduced and gave closing remarks in the recording and Dr. Kathleen T. O’Loughlin, ADA executive director, moderated the session, which is available for on-demand viewing.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we live and work,” said Dr. Gehani in his introduction. “This has been a very difficult time for the dental community. But from one practicing dentist to another, I’d like to reassure you that the ADA has our backs. And our Association is working to ensure that you have what you need to navigate these times very safely.”

The Q&A covered a range of topics including the use of personal protective equipment, coordinating care with other members of the medical community and the future of infection control in dentistry. Other questions included:

• What guidance should be given to a patient with a dental emergency who is known to have an active COVID-19 infection?
• Why don’t the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention mention use of rubber dam isolation?
• In relation to rinse protocols, is the evidence informing the use of hydrogen peroxide and povidone related to their effect on viruses like COVID-19?

“The COVID-19 situation is evolving, and the ADA’s work continues,” Dr. Gehani said in his closing. “Dentists like you are essential to the welfare of our communities. And our Association will continue to support you. We will get through this together.”

The ADA has created an overview document — Summary of ADA Guidance During the COVID-19 Crisis — that summarizes COVID-19's impact on dentistry, emerging science on the disease, the ADA's guidance for minimizing risk during emergency treatment and the resources the ADA has developed for dentists.