North American Dental Group dismisses WHO recommendation

Pittsburgh-based dental service organization North American Dental Group released a response to the World Health Organization's recent recommendation that patients delay routine dental care until the pandemic is under control, saying it "strongly disagrees" with the guidance.

In the statement, NADG's co-founder and CMO, Andrew Matta, DMD, highlighted the fact that dentists had been implementing comprehensive safety procedures to protect their staff and patients from COVID-19 for months. He said there is "no evidence that routine dental care has contributed to the spread of this virus."

"Routine care is often preventive care and it is extremely important in helping to avoid oral infections and diseases, which could impact a person's quality of life," Dr. Matta said. "This pandemic has proven that it is time for dentistry to be recognized as a form of essential health care."

A July NADG-commissioned survey found that 60 percent of respondents felt comfortable visiting a dentist for a routine procedure, which had increased more than two-fold since NADG conducted a similar survey in April. The July survey also revealed that 64 percent of respondents believe their dentist knows how to effectively prevent the spread of COVID-19, which had increased by 22 percentage points since April.

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