Washington — The ADA is supporting a new bill calling for a $25,000 tax credit for small businesses, including dental practices, to purchase personal protective equipment to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
In a June 24 letter to Reps. Brenda Lawrence, D-Mich., Troy Balderson, R-Ohio, Mike Quigley, D-Ill., and John Joyce, R-Penn., ADA President Chad P. Gehani and Executive Director Kathleen T. O’Loughlin thanked the lawmakers for introducing HR 7216, the Small Business Personal Protective Equipment Tax Credit Act.
Drs. Gehani and O’Loughlin told the legislators that this bill would provide a “much-needed tax credit” for dentists and said during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, many dental practices limited their services to emergencies or closed completely and have just now begun to reopen. Part of the reopening process includes owners implementing new infection control procedures, which also require enhanced personal protective equipment.
“The cost of these health and safety efforts are having a considerable economic impact on their businesses,” Drs. Gehani and O’Loughlin wrote. “In addition, many dental benefit plans do not currently reimburse dentists for the use of enhanced personal protective equipment.”
If enacted, HR 7216 would provide small businesses, including dental practices, with a tax credit up to $25,000 for the purchase of gloves, medical masks, N95 respirators, eye protection, gowns and aprons, boots or closed-toe work shoes, cleaning detergents, hand sanitizers, cleaning products and tools, as well as the retrofitting or installation of equipment.
“This credit would greatly help to mitigate the increased cost of personal protective equipment,” Drs. Gehani and O’Loughlin wrote. “At a time when dental practices are just starting to see their patients return and are trying to overcome the economic downturn caused by COVID-19, this type of credit could help to ensure that dental practices can stay open, retain and rehire their employees, and provide their patients with care.”
For more information about the ADA’s advocacy efforts during COVID-19, visit ADA.org/COVID19Advocacy.