HPI polling shows robust, sustained rebound in dental care

Percentage of dental practices open
The sixth wave of the ADA Health Policy Institute (HPI) impact of COVID-19 poll shows a robust, sustained rebound in the dental care sector in response to states lifting restrictions on elective dental care.

Conducted the week of June 1 and with data from 5,675 dentists in private practice, results indicate that 90% of dental practices are open for elective care according to the sixth round of results. In comparison, 65% of dental offices were open in mid-May and only 3% in early April.

Also showing signs of recovery, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Employment Situation report, released on June 5, reported that dental offices added 244,000 jobs in May. The latest HPI poll data show that 77% of dentists reported paying their staff fully the week of June 1. Employee dentists are being hired back, but not as rapidly as other staff.

Patient volume has rebounded to 58% of pre-COVID-19 levels, compared to 38% in the HPI poll taken the week of May 18.

The sixth round of HPI polling shows an increase in patient volume.

PPE stockpiles have increased in dental offices. HPI poll data for the week of June 1 show that 8% of dental offices indicated they do not have any N95/KN95 masks in stock. Two weeks ago this was at 15%, and in early May this was at 31%.

A new question introduced in this wave asked dentists how full their appointment schedule is for June. Nearly two-thirds of dentists indicated their appointment schedule is at least half full, and 8% said they are fully booked for the month of June.

HPI will continue to track data every two weeks in every state to provide a glimpse into how the pandemic is unfolding. Dentists who wish to view complete results, including results broken down by practice size, dental service organization status and at the state level, and results from all waves of this survey, including a special wave on dentists in public health settings, can do so at ADA.org/HPI.