Is your practice prepared for an opioid emergency?

A 2018 ADA survey of active, licensed dentists suggests that many members already have taken steps to deal with medical emergencies in the office: nearly 97 percent said they have a plan for handling medical emergencies, more than 93 percent keep an emergency medical kit with drugs on hand, and more than 86 percent report training staff how to respond to medical emer- gencies. Syncope, epinephrine reaction and postural hypotension are reported to be the most common emergencies experienced by patients, and dentists may feel well prepared to deal with those eventualities.

However, the opioid epidemic is forcing dentists to review training procedures and update their emergency kits to ad- dress the possibility of patient overdose. A recent webinar from the ADA Center for Professional Success noted that dentists may not be to blame for the crisis, but they are affected nonetheless. When these patients come around, they can be very anxious and reactive, be- cause it’s like an instant detox—on the other hand, a dentist can save a life.

The webinar cites that naloxone is a safe enough medication that it can be recommended any time an opioid overdose is suspected. And further, that using naloxone on a patient experienc- ing a stroke or cardiac event is still a safer protocol than waiting, because the sooner the naloxone is administered, the sooner the patient is likely to return to normal breathing. f

For the webinar and additional resources (including the referenced survey) go to practice-management/patients/emergency-medical- kit-webinar. For Emergency Medical Kit services provided by ADA-endorsed vendor, HealthFirst, go to

FAQs, Dental Practice Act Updated on MDA website


n its website,, the MDA provides two sections to help members with daily practice issues: FAQs ( and The Dental Practice Act ( In January, MDA staff reviewed and edited each entry

of the FAQ to update information and links. These include references to the requirements under Missouri law and references to other helpful resources, like those found on the ADA Center for Professional Success website. The MDA site also has a listing of topics under the Dental Practice Act and links to associated rules and statutes. The State recently updated its links to both the rules and statutes, and thus, all entries have been updated to reflect these changes. Take time to check out (and bookmark for future reference) these two useful pages. FAQ topics include the following—which are updated and added to on a regular basis, based on real calls, emails and other inquiries from member dentist offices.

Abuse (Child/Domestic/Elderly) Advertising AEDs (Defibrillators) Amalgam (BMP, Separators) Associateships Basic Life Support for License Blood Pressure Monitoring Guides BNDD/DEA Registration Botox (Dermal Fillers) CDC & OSHA (Infection Control) Change of Address Claim Payments (EFT, VCC) Closing A Practice Coding (CDT, ICD) Complaints (Third Party, Patient) Contract Analysis Service Court Duties (Jury Duty, Expert Testimony) Dental Team Disability (Patients & Dentists) Discounts, Sliding Fee Scales Drug Testing Policy Electronic Health Records Equipment Donation Equipment Safety (Checklist) Expanded Functions (EFDA) Eyewash Stations Fee Surveys Flu Shot (Administering) Fluoridation (Community Water, Topical) General Supervision Hearing Protection HIPAA Hospital Anesthesia (Insurance) Immunizations Informed Consent Insurance (Credentialing) Insurance (Non-Covered Services, Silent

PPOs) Insurance (Prompt Pay) Insurance (Third-Party Payer Complaints) Laboratory (Form, Records, Dentures) License & CE Locum Tenens (Temporary Dentists) Medicaid Medicare Minors (Policies) Movies (Showing in Practice, License) National Provider Identifier (NPI) Needle Stick Nitrous Oxide Opening a Practice Patients (Accounts Past Due) Patients (Dismissal) Patients (Non-Compliant) Patients (Non-English Speaking) Prescriptions Professional Liability Radiation (Inspections & Badges/Shielding) Records Risk Management Sealants Section 1557 Sedation (Permits) Standard of Care Sterilization (Testing, Monitoring) Substance Abuse Taxes Waste (Removal & Recycling) Workplace Policies Workplace Posters X-Rays (Frequency, Refusal, Inspections)

ISSUE 1 | JAN/FEB 2019 | focus 19

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