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Jul

14

Farmington Fluoridation battle

Posted by Paul on 7/14/2014 10:50:00 AM


The community fluoridation issue is not going away and is not to be taken lightly. Over the weekend, we learned that the city of Farmington, MO is  requesting public input on continuing their community wide fluoridation (CWF). The meeting is planned for July 28th.
 
The MDA immediately notified 7 local member dentists in the Farmington area. Their strong and respected voice will be needed at the meeting. It proved quite helpful to have MDA members engage the public with facts and expertise from their field at other similar city council meetings like the one in Columbia and Forsyth last November.
 
This is the sixth Missouri location we know of to take on this issue in 2014. That equals the number of CWF issues from all of 2013 and we are barely past the halfway point of the year.
 
You can read the local article. I won't rehash all of it for you but it highlights the main debate of cost savings vs potential health benefit. It is important for the dental profession to actively educate the public on this issue.
 
The article allows you to vote your preference on the issue. This is one easy way to represent your opinion on this valuable public health practice. I voted and now I'm blogging about it to raise awareness. What can you do to help?
 
I wish to thank Dr Lori Henderson for her vigilant watchfulness and leadership on the flurodie  issue. Dr Ray Storm, State Dental Director at Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services is also instrumental on this front in his new role. It takes everyone of us!


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Jul

11

Welcome ATSU's 2nd Class of Dental Students

Posted by Paul on 7/11/2014 9:43:00 AM


 
Today I was in Kirksville with Stacey Kloeppel, MDA Membership Manager, for the Informational Fair for incoming students AT Still University. This included the second class of 42 dental students attending the Missouri School of Dentistry and Oral Health (MOSODOH). There were also 172 new D.O. students running around.
 
Stacey did a great job putting together the MDA informational table. After luring them with candy, we told them about our Food for Thought program and some of the great benefits of organized dentistry like their free life insurance just for being an ASDA member. Then we sealed the deal by having gifts for each new dental student. They got a custom MDA tervis tumbler to tote around campus. SWAG!
 
I met at least 39 of the 42 new students and every last one of them was eager and enthusiastic and appreciative. They asked lots of good questions about MOMOM and service opportunities. It's really fun to meet them on their first day and think about them being student and then professional members for years and years to come. They barely know each other and there's MDA already reaching out to include them and be of service.
 
My casual research identified these stats about the class of 2018. They represent 16 different states including California, Idaho, and Georgia. There were 11 homegrown prospects from MO. I met 17 males and 22 females. In the photo above that's David from Arizona on the left and Peter from Chicago on the right.
 
I look forward to seeing this class again. It's hard to believe the inaugural class at MOSODOH has already completed year one and will be back for year two. Congrats to Dean Halliday and all his staff for an outstanding and whirlwind first year!


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Jul

09

Dollars and Sense

Posted by Paul on 7/9/2014 8:49:00 AM


 
Yesterday was staff budget day as we prepare a draft of the 2015 MDA budget for the Board Finance Committee to review. It's not sexy work going through all the line items but it is interesting to debate where to allocate the money. There are consistent factors like utilities. There are new priorities and issues that require additional funds. There are "age old" items that honor tradition. And there are plenty of items that get thorough debate. Why do we do fund this? Can it be done for less? Is this essential to our mission? Would new investments now make for greater savings later? There are no easy answers but good stewardship demands that we ask the questions.
 
I'm sure if we engaged all our members in the process, the range of opinions would be extensive. As it is, know that the staff constantly work to review our expenses and habits so as to maximize your dues and benefits. Also know that the Finance Committee and Board will go over every item and make hard choices before presenting a budget to the House of Delegates. Thankfully, the MDA is in strong financial health.
 
Money is always a hot topic and with an organization this large, there's a lot to be accountable for. We are grinding through that now and always welcome your input.
 


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Jun

27

GSLDS Hi - Tech Disco

Posted by Paul on 6/27/2014 2:34:00 PM


 
Burn baby burn, Disco Inferno! Well, it was something like that at GSLDS's 4th annual Hi-Tech Event  last night. My heart skipped a beat when I saw a 70's theme. Alas, my schedule did not allow me to attend. Thankfully, MDA Membership Manager and child of the 70's, Stacey Kloeppel was able to disco down and check out the show.
 
While it may not have been Studio 54 crazy, it was a success! The crowd approached 100 and several staff, members, and vendors made the night festive with special clothing and accessories. You can check out groovy Executive Director Meg Shannon and her afro. There's also Stacey, Dr Jane Otto and Laura Breeden looking like the Mod Squad. It looks like everyone had a blast!
 
As for the purpose of the event, members got to check out the latest gadgets and hi-tech offerings from supportive vendors and sponsors. Plus they had a chance to win all sorts of prizes. How you could pass on such dyn-o-mite fun is beyond my Mr. Kotter brain.
 
Thanks to Drs Hoffman and Rapini and the whole GSLDS membership team who work hard to provide great events for the component members. I will mark it down for next year and keep my platform shoes and John Travolta moves on call.
 
 


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Jun

27

Training the Trainers

Posted by Paul on 6/27/2014 2:09:00 PM


 
Good education programs rely on good leadership, strong curriculum, and equipped teachers. The Expanded Function Dental Assistant (EFDA) program is one such program and it was on display today in the basement conference room at the MDA. While my focus is generally elsewhere, you can't work in the MDA office and not encounter something EFDA related almost every day. So I was happy to see this crowd in person. 
 
MDA staff, Mandy Lewis and Melissa Albertson have done heroic work driving this EFDA beast through all sorts of things like the grant process, the curriculum process, the video process, the materials process, the Missouri Dental Board regulations, the scheduling and conducting of classes and the certification process. It is a first rate program that all MDA members can be proud of. Plus it brings in non dues revenue.
 
Today's event was a Restorative II train the trainer class. This was the first rollout of this class which is still pending approval from the MO Dental Board. Dr Ed Kendrick and Dr Rolfe McCoy delivered the goods to about three dozen attendees from across the state including representation from 7 of our 8 components. Attendess were MDA member dentists/trainers  and educators from CODA schools. You can see the teachers and the full class above. And you can see the always thinking Melissa Albertson soaking up the content.
 
I salute these leaders and volunteers who serve the greater membership with their knowledge and time. To find out more about the EFDA program contact mandy@modental.org.


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Jun

24

Are patients afraid of you?

Posted by Paul on 6/24/2014 11:12:00 AM


It's not news to you dentists that there's often a good bit of patient anxiety related to visiting the dentist. Not everyone appreciates the skill you've worked hard to develop and the gentle care you provide. People fashion all kind of excuses to miss or delay their appointment. But this creative excuse is worth passing along! Thanks to Dr Lynne Barbour for sharing the link.
 
Don't be daunted by this story. You keep doing what you do! This would never happen to an MDA member dentist.

12-year-old fakes own kidnapping to avoid dentist

REX Features

5 hr ago By Jack Linshi of TIME

When police found a 12-year-old boy in a French alpine village in May, he insisted he’d been kidnapped—only, he hadn’t.

For someone who wasn’t actually kidnapped, the boy described his abductor with imaginative detail: a 1.70 m. muscular European man in his mid 30s, clad in a black shirt and light jeans with a vertical scar on his right cheek had whisked him away, reports The Local.By chance, he managed to escape after his abductor had taken him to a town nearly 100 miles from his home.

For a month, police searched for the alleged kidnapper, but came up short. Their skepticism grew when they reviewed security footage from the boy’s hometown. Finally, they re-questioned him.

This time, he admitted something different: just kidding. In reality, he was too petrified to go to the dentist, so he staged his own kidnapping to get out of the appointment.

No word yet on what his parents have to say.

http://news.msn.com/offbeat/12-year-old-fakes-own-kidnapping-to-avoid-dentist


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Jun

23

GKCDS Day at the Royals Game

Posted by Paul on 6/23/2014 2:13:00 PM


 
" Let's Go Royals" was the chant of several dozen Greater Kansas City Dental Society members, friends, staff, sponsors, and families last Saturday at the K. They were gathered as part of the annual Day at the Royals game outing put on by the GKCDS. This was my first year to attend and it was awesome in spite of the heat and the 2-1 loss. Hey the team had just won 11 in a row and moved into first place. A let down is not surprising. I didn't notice anything but smiles (and sweat) on the faces of the people I talked to.
 
Thanks to good sponsors (BWTP, MDIS, UMB, Mallow-Tru Dental Studio, and Delta Dental) we were able to enjoy the event and the game at a very reasonable price. The event started with a catered tailgate and a nice breeze under the tent. People enjoyed their BBQ and cold beverages while visiting with sponsors and friends. The kiddos were active with bag toss. It was great to see both the "wise and experienced" crowd and some younger and newer faces as well. I enjoyed introducing myself to a handful of new faces as well as hobnobbing with the familiar ones.
 
The game still had highlights including Alex Gordon's home run and lots of silly between inning competitions. And there's always the amazing fountains. Ok, on to the photos above. That's Dr.Amy Gillihan (in white) with her office staff. Dr Chad Barth, Dr Wesley Christian, Dr Nikki Banwart Christian, and Dr Barth's wife take in the meal while they visit.  The tent shot reflects the windy but hot day that made photo taking less than desired. And the whole crowd enjoyed the shade of Section 425 with an excellent view of the game.
 


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Jun

06

Springfield New Dentist Event

Posted by Paul on 6/6/2014 10:35:00 AM


Few things are more important for a dental society than recruiting and retaining new members. This begins with an open arms policy toward the new dentists in the area. For the society, it's important to welcome new members, show them the ropes, help them get networked, and explain how organized dentistry works. For the new dentist, it's essential that they develop peers and have a safe place to hone their craft. They will be the guardians of the profession for years to come so it behooves them to learn some history and understand the process.
 
I salute the Greater Springfield Dental Society for hosting an event for the New Dentists in their component.  This speaks volumes for the value they place on being inclusive and welcoming. Judging from the photos, it was a fun and successful event. I would love to share more details but alas, my invitation was lost in the mail. Nonetheless, this event should be celebrated and copied across the state.
 
While I recognize some faces, I don't know all the names so I will let you play "who's that?'.
 


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Jun

02

Give Kids A Smile

Posted by Paul on 6/2/2014 4:34:00 PM



 
 
At the risk of sounding like a fat cat golfer, it was a rare privilege to play again today as part of the Give Kids A Smile Tourney. This was the 9th Annual event and it has become a regular stop for me. It's great to support Joan Allen and the terrific work that GKAS does in St Louis. They always have strong support and somehow we dodged the rain clouds.
 
Unfortunately once again I was not of much help as I played with the tourney co-chairs, Jeff Moisan of JL Moisan Construction and Bob Seals of Pro Plas. Ross Niekamp of Bank of America rounded out our under performing foursome. Still we managed to take second place in the B flight and receive a smattering of polite applause and some swag!
 
However a good meal and open bar healed all wounds and once again made this a great benefit for GKAS. As the MDA Foundation Director, I know we were happy to support it.
 
Maybe I'll put away my clubs and focus on the work at hand - unless there are other dental golf tournaments to be played!


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May

31

Special Smiles

Posted by moda on 5/31/2014 3:45:00 PM


 
For the first time in my three years with the MDA I had the privilege of attending the Special Smiles oral health screenings that were part of the Healthy Athletes program at the Special Olympics Summer Games. I was amazed! By everything!
 
First the organization from Johnathon Hankinson and his team at Special Olympics made it very easy for us to participate. Secondly, the athletes and their caregivers are so positive and grateful. You couldn't help but be inspired. Our team of 21 folks were able to screen 230 athletes from 10-3 on Saturday May 31. This is a valuable service for at an risk population that often has access issues. A good dose of prevention and education goes a long way. Plus they each left with a new brush, paste, and other goodies. And lastly, I was blown away by my volunteer team. We were in a hot and noisy gym and they never fatigued and treated every athlete like their only patient. I was humbled by their generous sacrifice on a sunny weekend summer afternoon. Many drove some distance to participate. I salute them all in this list:
 
Dr Bethany Baillargeon, Dr Suzanne Beck, Dr Gary Groff, Dr Kyle Lisenby, Dr Will Marshall, Dr Brad Miller, and Dr Jeff Paska. Plus we had RDH's Danielle Lasater and Natasha Liebhart and our other super sweet gang was Mary Cameron, Alex Foor, Sainy Hassam, Amanda Krajsa, Avis Marshall, Brittany Miller, Kristine Penrod, Parsa Owtad, Leah Roberts, Brooke Sabia, Kerrie Smith,  and Dina Tanbakuchi.
 
I loved this event and will be sure to be back for more. Hope to see you at the next one!


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