Welcome Join Members Login Find A Dentist Contact Us Calendar Shop MDA Store  

Blog Home
About Paul
Subscribe To Blog
Blog Archives
Blog Topics
View Topic List
New Page 1



SEDS Installation

Posted by Paul on 9/19/2014 10:33:00 AM

For the non-golfers, there was a day of CE offerings at the Isle of Capri. SEDS kept the fun rolling that night with their installation banquet. It's a family affair and the theme this year was dress as your favorite sports team. I believe Dr. Bob Fox's office won best dressed office. However, everyone looked good. Even me in my Auburn Tiger pullover. It just so happened my Tigers played on TV that night and won. Woot!
There's not much official program but MDA President, Dr. Merle Nunemaker, did present outgoing SEDS President, Dr. Courtney Beussink, with a well deserved plaque commending her for her service. Likewise, Dr. Beussink presented Dr. Michael Bennett with a lifetime member commendation. Dr. Bennett has been an active and engaging member for 35 plus years. Thanks and kudos! Finally, Dr. Nunemaker swore in the new officers. In the photo above from L to R is Dr. Dominique Harter (treasurer), Dr. Trevor Blattner (VP), Dr. Eric Blaich (pres elect) and Dr. Phil Loida (president). Congrats to so many young dentists taking a leadership role.
The rest of the night was merriment and blurry photos. See you next year, SEDS!

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink




Posted by Paul on 9/19/2014 10:14:00 AM

I'm not gonna lie to you. There's no work involved when I get the opportunity to travel to the South East Dental Society for their golf and installation banquet. The weather is always perfect, the course is fantastic and the members are awesome. This year was no exception.
First, the golf at Dalhousie Golf Club. The setting is spectacular and the layout is challenging.  The one sign above might as well be the answer to "which way did my ball go?". Of course, the best part of golf is hanging with your teammates. This year I was able to play with Dr. Nathan McGuire, Zach Clark of Clark Supply, and Dr. Eric Blaich. We started slowly and then rebounded with 5 birdies to avoid an embarrassing last place finish. That honor went to my travel companion, Dr. Merle Nunemaker. I'm sure he was graciously sandbagging!
I did notice the line for adult beverages in the coolers was longer than the line on the practice range. Needless to say, all had a very good time. A special shout out to MDIS for letting me play on their sponsorship dollar and to Ryan Swift of Patterson Dental who made a hole in one to help propel his team to victory. That's quite a feat and we all enjoyed our "Duck Fart" shots at Ryan's expense. Ryan is also a new board member for the MDA Foundation.
After golf, the SEDS business meeting was conducted over lunch. Dr. Nunemaker, trustee Dr John Freeze, and myself collaborated to give a full report on MDA activities. It's good to see engagement and thoughtfulness from a variety of members at this meeting.
Fore! And where's my ball... 

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink



UMKC Salutes its Scholars!

Posted by Paul on 9/16/2014 9:43:00 AM

Last night UMKC celebrated the best and brightest at their annual Scholarship Recognition Banquet. I was privileged to attend with MDAF President, Dr. Elwood Rice. That's Dr. Rice above with the three MDAF winners. Each won $5,000 for the 2014-15 school year. From left to right is Albana Kallmi, Corey Hastings, and Aaron Strange. Congratulations!
Usually my interaction with students is during the school day or at a large social event and it's helter skelter trying to have a meaningful conversation. It was a treat to enjoy a longer dinner and have time to get to know these students. Their backstories are as interesting as their futures are promising. And I'm impressed with all they juggle in the present. 
It's a new world out there with escalating debt, new practice models, and a changing healthcare landscape but these students and their classmates are sharp and will adapt. It's incumbent upon the MDA to find a way to welcome them and serve the profession they will inherit.
Kudos to all the UMKC staff for an impressive event. It's fun to see how many people work to fund and give these wide array of scholarships. 

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink



Cheers to SIU dental students

Posted by Paul on 9/13/2014 9:17:00 AM

Certainly you remember the rigors of dental school. You live in scrubs, eat out of a bag, and sleep is a distance dream after class, lab, work, studying, etc. Who wouldn't love a little social break? That's exactly what the Greater St Louis Dental Society provided for third and fourth year students at SIU when they hosted an event at the Grafton Winery and Brewhaus last night. It was a great way to interact with future members and show them a little kindness while having some yummy food and adult beverages.
I was delighted to represent the MDA as the state aspect of the Power of 3. I also played Let's Make a Deal games on the bus with the students as an icebreaker. The students were enthusiastic and fun but notice the before and after pictures on the bus above. I think they got more enthusiastic as the night went on!
The GSLDS staff  did a great job with this event. They had new dentists share what organized dentistry has meant to them as they launch a career. Plus there were plenty of prizes and goody bags for all. Hats off to Drs. Nouri, Otto, Cherry, Lansford, Wheeler, and Guilfoy for their volunteer service on a Friday night. Tough duty but we all found a way to enjoy it!

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink



A New Launch for Wellness

Posted by Paul on 9/5/2014 8:51:00 AM

Today was exciting! We did not break a champagne bottle over a ship hull but we did embark on a new wellness path for the MDA and the Dental Well Being Foundation (DWBF). Five new board members have joined the ranks to help us achieve our new mission. Welcome aboard to Drs. Christy Hager, Mike Frede, Stephen Matthews, Rob Tait and Ms Sharlene Rimiller. 
Their first task was to join the full board for a long planning day as we assessed where we were and where we hope to be by the end of 2016. Our key objective areas will be increasing awareness of who we are and what we offer, developing a broader offering of resources, and growing our funding.
While the DWBF will always offer treatment options for professionals in distress from substance abuse or other mental and physical illnesses, it will now seek to proactively offer resources that can lead to a healthy professional team and family. These offerings will range from nutrition to weight management to family/marital issues to ergonomics and more. We welcome your input on both needs to address and good resources to add to our toolbox. 
Our voyage will take time and need a lot of help from others but we are taking small steps like offering a fitness walk at the House of Delegates and a breakfast CE  on ergonomics at Winter Session. Keep your eyes open for new materials and join us in our journey to take care of our members, their team, and their families. 

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink



Membership Task Force

Posted by moda on 8/26/2014 11:28:00 AM

Today was one that I had been looking forward to for some time. We hosted a Membership Task Force meeting in the basement of the MDA building and it was electric. I love working with such a variety of passionate members and smart staff who all care about making the MDA better.
Our task was a sober one: How do we address declining membership trends. We can't ignore them. We must have courage to examine causes and look at the landscape and figure out some ways to improve. We had a great team working on it. Here's the genesis of how it came together.
The ADA offers Membership Program for Growth grants to assist states with new outreach or membership ideas. We had previously used one to host our first ever Connect4Success conference for new dentists. It was a success that we are still building off. This time our grant request was for funding to pull together a statewide group to address the membership issue. Once we learned that we had the money, we identified a list of invitees. They were selected to represent every component, different ages, both dental schools, different practice models, both genders, ethnic diversity and different member statuses (never a member, non-renew, long timers, newbies). We had 21 dentists accept the invitation to participate at the event. Prior to that we established an email list serve and had some spirited engagement around a few questions. I knew today would be good based on the honest and reasoned opinions expressed on the list serve.
Stacey Kloeppel, MDA Membership Manager, and I worked with the ADA to plan the agenda and pull off the event. It was great to see all three levels of the tripartite working together to improve. That's the Power of 3. We made sure the agenda was interactive and filled with movement and discussion. After all these hearty volunteers sacrificed their Saturday for the great good.
Jeanine Pekkarinen and Chris Chico from the ADA, joined me and Stacey and Melissa Albertson as facilitators although it didn't take much to wind this crowd up. There was acceptance of the hard facts and resolve to address them. There was plenty of optimism about the resources at hand and the future of the profession. Basically, we just needed to recommit to the number factor of membership growth...personal interaction. Even with all the data and technology, there is no substitute for welcoming a new member, listening to the issues of one considering not renewing, or engaging a fringe member to be more involved and discover all the benefits of membership.
I could go on and on but blogs are short form. Just know that we have some exciting and bold goals to be a relevant, vibrant, valuable, and growing organization focused on helping all members succeed.
A big shout out to the ADA and especially all the task force members who gave their time and talent to enrich the association.

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink



MDA Board Meeting

Posted by Paul on 8/22/2014 11:09:00 AM

The MDA Board meets quarterly to handle the business of the association. Today was one such meeting and I thought I would give you a brief look at what happens around the table. While no one mistake the work as sexy and must see TV, I do think you trustees are prepared and engaged for a wide scope of agenda items. This particular agenda included voting for membership awards, approving the budget that will be sent to the House of Delegates,  and hearing presentations on the National Dental Quality Alliance, the Missouri School of Dentistry and Oral Health, and the status of oral health in Missouri. That's Dr. B. Ray Storm, state dental director at DHSS, addressing the group in the photo above.
In addition there are reports from committees, discussion items,a report from the executive director and various resolutions to consider. It's a mind meld of important information requiring insightful discussion and decision making. The board materials sent out in advance of the meeting totaled 312 pages! Your trustee is far from a nominal figure. They commit considerable time and study to represent you. Thankfully we have chocolate and caffeine on hand to spur the troops when needed.
As a reminder, any member may attend a meeting of the board. You might enjoy getting to know your leadership and watching them in action. You need to let Margie Kunzie know of your intentions so we can plan accordingly for space, etc. Margie@modental.org.

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink



Is It Safe Being a Patient?

Posted by Paul on 8/7/2014 4:20:00 PM

Today I attended the Missouri 2014 Joint Regulatory Patient Safety Conference in Columbia with our Well Being Program Administrator, Rebecca Mowen. It was sponsored by the four regulatory boards housed under the Missouri Department of Insurance and Professional Registration. These boards are the Missouri Dental Board, the Missouri Board of Nursing, the Missouri Board of Pharmacy, and the Missouri Board of Registration for the Healing Arts (medicine). The conference was the first time these entities had worked together in this manner.


The objective of the conference was to increase dialogue on the need for greater patient safety measures. This begins with communication and coordination of care across all possible caregivers associated with a patient from diagnosis to aftercare. The concept of a Just Culture was put forth where the focus is on proactive learning from errors and correcting systems rather than punishing offenders. Presentations were given by Becky Miller, executive director of the Center for Patient Safety Center, Steve Calloway, RPh and pharmacy board member, Drs. Les Hall and Erica Otis from MU School of Medicine, Dr Sue Scott, Manager of Patient Safety  and Risk Management at MU Healthcare, and Jim Wieberg, director of MAOPS Physician Health Program.


There was also a roundtable report from the four regulatory boards describing the scope and degree of patient safety issues they see in a year. They all gave examples of complaints and discipline as a means of showing how far reaching the patient safety issues can range. Brian Barnett represented the MDB and said they are obligated to investigate all of the approximate 400 complaints each year. Here’s how he broke down the classification and quantity of top complaints.

·         Quality of Care - 96

·         CE Violation - 32

·         Advertising Violation – 30

·         Malpractice Report – 28

·         Fee Dispute – 25

·         10 other categories had less than 20 cases


Mr. Barnett broke down the types of discipline into these categories and the number times each was used last year

·         Probation (up to 5 years) – 10

·         Suspension (up to 3 years) – 7

·         Censure – 2

·         Revocation – 2


Finally Mr. Barnett mentioned that the current hot topics that were hard to regulate centered around sedation and infection control.


There were no significant next steps announced at the conference other than to continue to work to improve collaborative communication and care coordination. The conference was filmed and will be made available for viewing and additional use. The MDA attended to keep abreast of the discussion. There was good content on provider burnout and second victim phenomenen that is of value to the Well Being Program.

My takeaway? Healthcare is complex and opportunities for unintended blunders are everywhere. Be careful and communicate!

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink



Give Kids A Smile Up Close

Posted by Paul on 8/5/2014 4:00:00 PM

You've seen me use this space often to laud the fine work of Give Kids A Smile. This program began in Missouri and is now a top flight effort in many states. I saw a great interview with Joan Allen, the GKAS Executive Director, on the Goedeker's Home Life blog. It goes into more detail than my space ever allows and it has some great photos. I encourage you to check it out and find a way to support this awesome endeavor. Congratulation to Joan and her whole team! Read the fine interview by blogger Liz Carroll here.

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink



Oral Health Awareness Month

Posted by Paul on 8/1/2014 8:38:00 AM

Welcome to August. It is now officially Oral Health Awareness Month for Missouri. This designation is a result of  House Concurrent Resolution 25 that passed during the recent legislative session. The resolution was sponsored by Representative Donna Lichtenegger of Cape Girardeau. Rep. Lichtenegger is also a RDH and champions oral health in many ways. You can read the official resolution here.
The dental community certainly knows the value of prevention and that begins with awareness. What can you do this month to increase awareness where you practice? The MDA will post oral health tips through the month on the MDA Facebook page. There will also be links to MDA's Your Mouth is Talking Campaign and ADA's MouthHealthy,org. Both of these offer great education on oral health habits.
Here's a month focused on your profession. Make the most of it!

Comments (0)  |  PermaLink

End of Recent Posts

Click on the Archives in the left column for more posts.


Join Members Login Find A Dentist Contact Us Calendar Shop MDA Store