ADA recovery task force to release hazard assessment tool

Guide latest in series of resources to help dentists protect team, patients as practices reopen     

The ADA’s Advisory Task Force on Dental Practice Recovery is set for a May release of a hazard assessment guide, which will assist the dentist in evaluating procedural risks as they consider how best to provide both a safe workplace and patient care.

“The hazard assessment tool will allow dentists to assess their risks based on what’s occurring in their local region, rather than just the amount and types of personal protective equipment that they have on hand, but also on what’s occurring in their local region,” said Dr. Rudy Liddell, task force co-chair.

It’s the latest in a series of resources the task force has produced in supporting dentists as they navigate the process of reopening their practices amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The hazard assessment, according to the task force, is for dentists returning to work. An evaluation should be run with each patient based on a number of factors including such things as the environment, patient’s health, dental work needed, how that work might be delivered, what staff is needed and what type of personal protective equipment is available and appropriate. These factors are balanced against any mitigating actions that might be taken, with the result being an assessment of the overall risks in delivering that care under the patient’s circumstances.