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One element of our argument against the medical device tax is that the Affordable Care Act contains little additional dental coverage. The Obama administration conceived the tax to counter what they claimed would be a ‘windfall’ to medical device companies because more Americans would have health insurance, therefore using more services and increasing profits for these companies. Dental companies got the tax and no windfall sales or profits!

The Physician Payment Sunshine Act  (Sunshine Act) requires most companies that make, package, distribute, market or sell health care products to document and report nearly all direct and indirect financial interactions with various health care professionals (HCPs) to the federal government.

The Sunshine Act does not preempt more stringent state laws and reporting requirements (e.g., Vermont, Massachusetts) and these laws include broad definitions of HCPs, products and some include bans on meals and gifts.

In March, DTA participated in a meeting of the 2014 ADA Standards Committee on Dental Products (SCDP) in Charlotte, N.C. The SCDP looks at standards for all types of dental products and equipment from basic toothbrushes and sealants to  complex devices, including digital radiography and CAD/CAM. The SCDP ensures practitioner and patient safety by determining fundamental design and manufacturing standards that can be easily adhered to in the U.S. by domestic manufacturers and their global counterparts.

Jay CrowleyAll U.S. devices are required to have a unique device identification bar code on the device or the packaging starting in September 2014 for Class III devices, Class II devices by September 2016 and Class I devices by September 2018, but you should be preparing for these changes today. That’s the message DTA members received during the March 5 UDI (Unique Device Identification) Implementation Workshop in Silver Spring, Md., featuring keynote speaker Jay Crowley, former head of the UDI initiative for FDA.

DTA's Christian Brutzer was installed as the President of the Board of the International Dental Manufacturers at the February Chicago Dental Society Midwinter Meeting.  Mr. Brutzer will serve for two years in this role and will lead IDM, work closely with the World Dental Federation (FDI), and act as an advocate for increasing access to oral health care for the global population. 

 

(Left to Right) Friedrich Herbst, Executive Director of IDM, Pam Clark, Past President of the Australian Dental Industry Association and Christian Brutzer, VP of Ivoclar Vivadent and newly installed President of IDM. 

 

 

The DTA Exhibits Working Group held a meeting during the Chicago Dental Society Midwinter Meeting.  This was the last meeting for long time Exhibits Working Group member, Dave Lang (Lang Dental).  Dave has been an active member of this committee since 1980.  The Exhibits Working Group thanks Dave for his many years of service.

 

(Left to Right) Paul Mondock (Septodont NA), DTA Exhibits Group Chairman, Dave Lang (Lang Dental), and Fred Freedman, DTA staff liaison to the Exhibits Working Group.

 

 

Background: The Kids’ Healthy Mouths Ad Council public service campaign launched on August 14, 2012 with the distribution of public service advertising (PSAs), public relations outreach, social media engagement, 2 minute videos and a website, 2min2x.org.  Based on extensive target research, a campaign theme was developed:  Kids will spend a lot of time doing all sorts of things. Let’s get them to spend two minutes twice a day brushing their teeth.  Known as the Children’s Oral Health campaign, this effort directly communicates the importance of regular brushing behaviors and is targeted both to English and Spanish speaking parents and caregivers of children aged 0-12 with an emphasis on lower income and minority populations.

The DTA has played a lead role in the conception, development and management of the program with the Ad Council as part of the Executive Committee of the Partnership.  The DTA Foundation is the sponsoring organization for the campaign.

The medical device excise tax on sales is equivalent to raising the corporate income tax to as much as 50 percent. Don’t be discouraged by the lack of action from Congress on major issues. Our efforts to repeal the medical device tax are still primary. So what can you do help change the Medical Device Tax regulations? 


Ad Council and the Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives Introduce
First Free Mobile App, Toothsavers

NEW YORK, January 15, 2014 – The Ad Council and the Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives announced today the release of the new mobile gaming app, Toothsavers, available online and for Android and iOS devices. Created on behalf of the Kids’ Healthy Mouths campaign, the free mobile game is the first developed in-house by the Ad Council — the nation’s largest producer of public service advertising. The app inspires kids to brush their teeth for two minutes, twice a day by enlisting them in rescuing friendly fairy tale characters from an evil, cavity-creating sorceress who cast a wicked teeth-rotting spell on the kingdom.

In a move to help expand the U.S. health care workforce, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced that they awarded $55.5 million in FY 2013 to strengthen training for health professionals and increase the size of the nation’s health care workforce.  The 270+ grants are targeted to address workforce needs in nursing, public health, behavioral health, health workforce development, and dentistry.

While a majority of the funding ($45.4 million) is being directed to support nursing workforce development, there are several grant programs that will bring focus to and have an impact on access to dental care.  Within the $45.4 million funding package, $6.7 million is being directed to grants promoting inter-professional collaborative practice to foster innovative practice models for providing care.  Separate from the nursing funds an additional $3.1 million in grants will help state designated dental health professional shortage areas develop and implement innovative programs to address dental workforce needs. The HHS grants require states to match at least 40 percent of the grant funding or provide equivalent support. 

A complete copy of the HHS press release on their 2013 grant initiative is available, as is a complete list of specific HHS grants.

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