Maintaining a Strong Dental Team During Uncertain Times

Many dental practices across the country have postponed all elective procedures or are closed completely due to the coronavirus pandemic. The American Dental Association first made the recommendation to postpone all elective procedures on March 16. Many state associations and state governments have made similar recommendations or mandates.

Even if your dental practice remains open, it’s likely you may have had to cut down on staffing while seeing a reduced patient load. With the uncertainty of the COVID-19 crisis, it’s important to remain positive, stay informed and look for opportunities to help you and your practice grow.

Remaining positive during uncertain times

Keeping a positive outlook can be challenging, but one way to achieve this goal is to maintain transparent and consistent communication with your staff and patients. To the later, our partners at RevenueWell have put together a timely list of ways to communicate and stay connected to patients during the coronavirus pandemic (or during any other unexpected office closure).

Some simple ways you can stay connected with your dental team is by checking in on their continuing education (CE) credits, holding group discussions within your practice to discuss challenges and opportunities, as well as by attending webinars or other virtual events together. While you’re looking into your CE credits, be sure to also check with your local board of dentistry to see if they are postponing licensing renewals, many are.

Stay informed on the latest COVID-19 developments

With the incredible deluge of information surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, staying well informed should be easy. But with the amount of misinformation and irrelevant content swirling around, it can be tricky to know what is important and what is not worth your time. For that, we have created a Resource Center specifically geared toward oral health professionals.

Look for professional development opportunities

Finally, with the potential downtime you and your dental staff may be experiencing, now is a great time to earn some CE credits and work on professional development through webinars – you may even want to host your own virtual learning sessions with your staff.

Read on for a list of CE and other oral health learning opportunities curated by Cassie Brehmer, a marketing campaign specialist at Patterson Dental and licensed dental assistant. Many of these resources are updated frequently so check back often for future learning opportunities.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) resources, CE and professional development opportunities

  • Patterson Dental Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resource CenterPatterson Dental’s COVID-19 Resource Center is continually updated to provide oral health professionals with the latest developments and advice regarding the coronavirus pandemic. Check often for the resources you need to stay safe and informed with information pertinent to dental practitioners from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the American Dental Association (ADA), peers, industry experts and more.
  • AADOM open membership – The American Association of Dental Office Management (AADOM) is offering complimentary full-year memberships to dental office management teams. Join by April 15 for timely access to information, educational resources and community support. Sign up here.
  • OSAP open membership – The Organization for Safety, Asepsis, and Prevention (OSAP) has opened its members-only website to all dental professionals and industry personnel effective immediately. Learn more here (PDF).
  • A-dec Free Online Dental CE Courses – A-dec dental continuing education provides free online CE courses and credits for dentists and their staff. Learn more at a-dec.com/education.
  • Viva Learning – Patterson Dental partners with Viva Learning to provide free CE courses including on-demand and live webinars, product training, podcasts and more. Start learning.
    • Webinar: Infection Prevention in the Dental Hygiene Treatment Room: What will Post COVID-19 Look Like? Register here.
  • Digital Mastery Courses from Planmeca – Complimentary one-hour courses from dental industry thought leaders. Learn a new skill or deepen your understanding of a clinical topic with complimentary one-hour courses from dental industry thought leaders. Learn more on Planmeca’s website.
  • KaVo Kerr webinars – KaVo Kerr offers a wide range of dental learning opportunities via live webinars. Here are a few of our favorites:
    • Restorative CE – Leveraging Advances in Restorative Dentistry by Dr. Scott Coleman, free when entering code: kkard20
    • Infection Control CE – An Overview of Infection Prevention in the Dental Office by Dr. Fiona Collins, free when entering code: kkinf20
    • All Webinars – Visit kavokerr.com to see all upcoming webinars. 
  • Free webinars from Young Dental – Join Young Dental for a series of one-hour CE courses designed to provide dental professionals with an engaging and immersive education experience. Below are a few upcoming webinars. View the full list at youngdental.com.

These are only a few upcoming webinars and resources office managers, dentists, dental hygienists and dental assistants can turn to for professional development opportunities while navigating these uncertain times. Be resilient, stay positive and look for actions you can take now to come back stronger than ever.

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