ADA provides interim PPE guidelines as some states begin reopening

Clinical Leadership & Infection Control

The American Dental Association released interim personal protective equipment guidelines as some states consider reopening, though the ADA still recommends that dentists provide only emergency care until at least April 30.

President Donald Trump released guidelines April 16 detailing initial criteria for reopening, along with three phases aimed at mitigating a resurgence that can be implemented at governors' discretion.

The ADA acknowledged that government decisions supersede its own recommendations, but urged dentists to exercise professional judgment and carefully consider the availability of appropriate protective gear to minimize risk of exposure. The ADA is also asking federal agencies to prioritize dentists for personal protective equipment.

Since COVID-19 patients can be asymptomatic, the ADA guidelines advise dentists to assume all patients can transmit the disease. If masks with either goggles or face shields are not available, there is a higher risk for infection, and dentists must use professional judgment related to the treatment and specific patient risk factors.

Click here for interim mask and face shield guidance.

More articles on dental:
ADA creates COVID-19 recovery task force
CDA: 6 things dentists should do to avoid patient abandonment charges amid pandemic
Kentucky dental practice furloughs more than half of workforce

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