Message from MDHA President

Hello fellow Michigan Hygienists!

These last seven weeks, have not been anything that I ever anticipated, nor do I think anyone ever saw anything like this coming. Over these last few weeks I have taken time to reflect on what it means to be a hygienist, especially a hygienist in 2020. The future of dental hygiene will be changing, however with the support of our members and our peers we can only hope to shape what our future holds for each and every one of us. Now more than ever it’s important that we stand together and work towards our united goals and aspirations for the future of our profession.

In last several weeks, I have received your concerns through social media, emails, and text messages. I understand that there is fear for when we can return to work and questions for when that will happen. Let me just say I hear you and I empathize with you in your fears and concerns. I wish I had the answers to all of your questions, but at this time there is still uncertainty. The CDC this week posted an update for the dental office settings along with ADHA and ADA releasing a toolkit for the dental office. With these tools to guide us, we have the ability to gain knowledge and a better understanding of what the new normal might look like. However, some still have questions about what this actually means. Will we be required to wear head coverings, face shields, disposable gowns? Will we be required an N95 mask or is a class III surgical mask sufficient? What should we do if our employer doesn’t want to follow these recommendations and we are left in a situation where we no longer feel comfortable caring for our patients? Let’s be honest, it’s not just ourselves we worry about, it’s about the health and wellbeing of our patients and loved ones.

As we begin to embark on another week off from seeing our routine patients. I want to remind you, yet again, that we are all in this together. As more concrete information becomes available, I will keep you informed. Some may have different opinions on returning to work and that is fine. Stay strong and remember that the Michigan Dental Hygienists’ Association is here for you. We may not be able to answer all questions but we have a great team that can do their best to assist you.

Kind Regards,

Danielle Rauch, RDH, BA

President of the Michigan Dental Hygienists’ Association

COVID-19

SPECIAL ALERT

MDA Guidance on COVID-19

The situation around the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is rapidly evolving and the number of cases in Michigan is growing rapidly. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared a state of emergency on March 11, and subsequently has taken many steps to limit the transmission of the disease. In addition, there is concern that the shortage of personal protective equipment will negatively impact the ability to care for acutely ill patients in the hospital setting.

Therefore, the Michigan Dental Association is strongly recommending that Michigan dentists close their offices beginning March 17 for at least two weeks to patients seeking preventive and elective care, and limit treatment to necessary treatment and patients requiring emergency care.

The COVID-19 issues are currently evolving, and the MDA believes we need to do all that we can as a profession to contain the virus and to keep our patients, our dental teams, and our communities safe. MDA members should frequently consult with the MDA, ADA, CDC and MDHHS websites for latest information.

Links to those websites appear below:

Watch for additional updates from the MDA as they become available.

 


Dear MDHA member:

As COVID-19 continues to spread across the U.S. and cases in Michigan increase, it is important to remain calm and informed on the status and threats.  

For your safety, the April 14, 2020 Michigan Dental HygienistsAssociation Legislative Luncheon has been canceled.  I will keep you updated as soon as we can confirm a new date.

The State of Michigan through the Office of Governor Whitmer and LARA is communicating with healthcare professionals and the public regularly. You can find out more information and sign up for the COVID-19 email list via the Governor’s website here or https://www.michigan.gov/coronavirus

Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed an order that canceled all events over 250 people and all assemblages in shared spaces over 250 people beginning on Friday, March 13 at 5:00pm and ending on Sunday, April 5 at 5:00pm. The governor’s executive order also closes all K-12 school buildings to students from Monday, March 16 until Sunday, April 5. Child care facilities will remain open during this time, whether they are attached to schools or free standing. 

Under this executive order, all events and shared-space assemblages of more than 250 people are temporarily prohibited in the state. Certain assemblages are exempt from this prohibition, such as those for the purpose of: industrial or manufacturing work, mass transit, or the purchase of groceries or consumer goods. 

Please stay healthy and safe.

Patients with confirmed infection have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of: 

  • Fever 
  • Cough 
  • Shortness of breath 

The best prevention for viruses, such as influenza, the common cold or COVID-19 is to: 

  • If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19, call your healthcare provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital. 
  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.   
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.   
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.   
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.   
  • If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others. 
  • Replace handshakes with elbow bumps. 
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting. 

If there are any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Kind regards,

Danielle Rauch, RDH, BA

President, Michigan Dental Hygienists’ Association

Ann’s Michigan Message

ADHA Ann Lynch Director of Governmental Affairs sends out a message to the Michigan Dental Hygienists’ Association.