In its continued efforts to keep abreast of issues happening outside dental schools that affect future graduates and to stay informed of new developments related to licensure, American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Institutional Capacity Building portfolio members recently attended several key meetings in Chicago. First, the American Association of Dental Boards (AADB) Mid-Year meeting in Chicago, April 6–7, and second, the Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations (JCNDE) meeting in Chicago on April 9.
The AADB assists regulatory state dental boards in protecting the public. Hot topics at this year’s meeting included sessions on policies and activities related to sedation and anesthesia, standards of care and current trends on difficult cases facing dental practitioners.
Guidelines have been tightened to address a slight uptick in the number of children harmed during dental visits, so AADB sessions focused on recent problem cases. To combat the recurrence of problem cases, dental educators work to ensure that dental students know to how to properly administer anesthesia. A panel on current and difficult trends gathered to discuss issues such as Colorado’s recent legalization of marijuana, and how dental boards can ensure dentists don’t jeopardize patient safety. The panel gave examples of the importance for dentists to establish a good rapport with local media. They cited examples where positive relationships could have helped local dentists show their concern for the overall health of local community members.
The JCNDE is comprised of a 15-member commission that includes representatives from dental schools, dental practice, state dental examining boards, dental hygiene, dental students and the public. Their purpose is to conduct examinations that assist state boards in determining the qualifications of dentists and dental hygienists who seek licensure. This year’s meeting focused on new standards that have passed and updates on the integration of Part I and Part II of the National Board Dental Examinations.
The commission is hard at work developing the Integrated National Board Dental Examination (INBDE). The integrated exam combines basic science knowledge and behavioral sciences with clinical practice, and will be administered during dental school students’ senior years. With a great deal of rigor and research, the exam integration is moving forward. However, no date has yet been established for a new exam and the JCNDE states that it will announce a date for a new exam at least four years prior to its implementation.
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