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Why they call it “The Volunteer State”

July 1, 2007
Welcome to another exciting issue of DE®. Be sure to read a new continuing series on how to handle emergencies in the dental office.

by Joes Blaes

Welcome to another exciting issue of DE®. Be sure to read a new continuing series on how to handle emergencies in the dental office (see page 66). I feel that this is an area that we all tend to train for once and then put on the back shelf until that fateful day when something happens. We must have a plan in place and the equipment to help us carry out that plan. Over the next few months, Drs. Roberson and Rothman will help you understand and plan for handling the emergencies that happen in the office. This is one series you will want to tear out and share with your team.

Tim McGraw
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In early May, I was in Atlanta at the AACD meeting. This is a premier meeting for anyone interested in the latest information on cosmetic dentistry (shouldn’t we all be interested in that topic?). The program is packed with the best clinicians giving the best information that is available today. There is so much going on that it is hard to keep up with everything. Dentists and lab people are preparing for the accreditation exams or they are taking the exam, while others are learning advanced techniques in hands-on courses. I was very impressed with the depth of learning taking place at this meeting and I know that I will not miss another meeting. Next year’s meeting will be in New Orleans from May 6-10.

From Atlanta, I traveled to Nashville and spoke all day on Friday and Saturday at the Tennessee state meeting. This is a favorite meeting for me because I have met so many fine people in Tennessee. It is always great to come back and see old friends. On Friday, I did two sold-out hands-on temporization workshops. The highlight of the workshops was the new Protemp Crown from 3M ESPE. The course participants were really excited at how easy it was to make these new temporaries for posterior teeth. I presented my Pearls for Your Practice® course on Saturday and it was well received.

The Tennessee State Dental Association held a fundraiser on Friday night for the Nashville Interfaith Dental Clinic, a full-service clinic for patients who cannot afford dentistry. The fundraiser was a night to remember at the Ryman Auditorium (the old venue for the Grand Ole Opry) with none other than Tim McGraw. The show was terrific, thanks to the entertainers and the acoustics of the wonderful old Ryman. Thanks to the generosity of the performers, $100,000 was raised for the clinic.

Volunteers are the lifeblood of Interfaith Dental Clinic, which is staffed full-time by a paid staff as well as volunteer dentists. During the 2004-05 fiscal year, Interfaith recorded more than 2,248 volunteer hours worth $231,538. Since the clinic’s start, more than 275 dental professionals have volunteered to provide dental care for the clinic’s patients. The clinic boasts a list of some of the best dentists, hygienists, and specialists in the Nashville area.

We must all continually look for opportunities to give back to dentistry, and volunteering at a clinic is certainly an excellent way. Many dentists waive their fees for patients who cannot afford dentistry and they are to be commended as well. Access to care is still a very real problem and the solution must come from dentistry and not from a benevolent government!

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Last month, The Dr. Samuel D. Harris National Dental Museum (pictured at right) celebrated its 11th anniversary. If you have not visited the museum, you need to put this on your must-see list when you visit the Baltimore area. I know that you will be excited and proud of the manner in which our great profession is presented in the past and in the present.

Joe Blaes, DDS, Editor - e-mail: [email protected]
Toll-free phone number: (866) 274-4500

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