In our last episode, we talked about how the Texas State Board allowed their COVID-19 rules to expire. We think it’s a good thing! But a lot of dentists are not happy about it. So in this episode of Talking with the Toothcop, Andrea and I dive a little deeper into the topic. We’ll share why we think it’s a good thing and what dentists can do moving forward.
Outline of This Episode
- [2:51] The feedback on the COVID-19 rule expiration
- [5:22] You can continue what you were doing
- [8:10] Dentists are encouraged to follow CDC guidelines
- [11:00] Let us know if you have any episode requests!
The feedback on the COVID-19 rule expiration
I’m not entirely surprised dentists aren’t happy with the expiration of the rule. Many dentists want to know what they have to do—they like structure. I thought it was a beautiful thing that the state board was allowing dentists to take the reins again.
But a large cross-section of dentists like the comfort of being told what to do. I don’t entirely understand. I get that you want to focus your energy elsewhere. But I like to be recognized for my ability to think, reason, and make my own decisions. Not everyone feels the same way as I do.
Oddly enough, there were a lot of gray areas when regulations were first announced last year. Dentists wanted clarity. Now they’ve taken clarity away again and it can be overwhelming. So what can you do?
Continue what you were doing
We want to be clear. Just because the Texas state board allowed their COVID-19 rules to expire does not mean you have to stop following them. If you—and your patients—were comfortable with the level of safety it afforded you, then by all means stick with it. Work within your comfort level.
However, I believe you need to get comfortable stepping outside of your comfort zone. It’s how you grow. You learn to trust your instincts and your ability to trust your own decisions. As a dentist, you’ve earned respect and you’re recognized as someone qualified to make tough decisions beyond the average person (when it comes to oral health). But everything that pertains to your patient’s health is your responsibility. Don’t be afraid to do your own research and make your own decisions.
Dentists are encouraged to follow CDC guidelines
The state board encouraged dentists to follow CDC guidelines but did not instruct them to. It sounds like this governing body understands it’s stressful, so if you want guidance, you can continue to follow the CDC recommendations. But they are giving you room to make your own interpretations. By the tone of the ruling, there is flexibility and forgiveness if you get something wrong.
Any recommendations for requests for our next topic? Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Resources & People Mentioned
- Learn more about protectIt dental at https://dentalcompliance.com/drugkit or call them at 888-878-8916 and tell them that the Toothcop sent you!
- The expiration of the COVID-19 Rule
- Texas Dental Board Rule 108.7 Subsection 16
- CDC Guidance for Dental Settings