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HPI encourages dentists to join the COVID-19 economic poll panel

December 14, 2020

By Kimber Solana

The ADA Health Policy Institute is seeking to expand its panel of dentists for its ongoing COVID-19 economic poll in an effort to continue to monitor the impact of the pandemic on dental practices and maintain the representativeness of poll results. Dentists working in all practicing settings and of all specialties and backgrounds are encouraged to sign up to participate through Dec. 31 using the simple HPI form.

Dentists working in all practicing settings and of all specialties and backgrounds are encouraged to sign up to participate through Dec. 31 using the simple HPI form.

HPI thanks dentists who are already part of this panel and hope to count on their continued participation in 2021; there is no need to rejoin.

HPI launched its COVID-19 economic impact tracking poll on March 23. Dentists were also asked to join a panel in which they complete a biweekly poll. The data collected in 2020 have resulted in biweekly reports on the status of dental practices and have helped guide the ADA in producing a number of COVID-19 resources. The tracking poll has also informed advocacy efforts to help dentists recover from the impact of the pandemic and adapt to the changing practice conditions.

According to the HPI data collected from its COVID-19 economic impact tracking poll conducted the week of Nov. 30, prices for personal protective equipment have increased substantially since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The poll found that on average, across all categories of PPE, nearly one-third of dentists reported that prices have tripled or more. The increased prices have led to dentists relying on a greater variety of PPE distributors, including turning to Amazon and smaller distributors, compared to before the pandemic.

The poll also found that one-third of dental practices reported “business as usual” in terms of patient volume. Patient volume was estimated at 76% of pre-COVID-19 levels. Recovery has been slower in public health settings, where only 20% reported “business as usual” and patient volume was estimated at 66% of pre-COVID-19 levels.