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Public Health Dentistry




Infection Prevention and Safety

State oral health programs have a shared responsibility for the safe delivery of oral health care. ASTDD is partnering with the Organization for Safety, Asepsis and Prevention (OSAP) to link states to technical assistance, educational materials, information on policy development and other resources on infection prevention and safety.

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In The News - Fall 2015

September has been designated as National Dental Infection Control Awareness Month (NDICAM). Click here to learn more about this special observance and access resources you can use for patient education. 
Influenza season is approaching. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), and the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC) recommend that all US healthcare workers be vaccinated annually against influenza. 
A Social Media Message Library containing messages for every type of disaster is now available for public health and emergency response communicators. 
Get Smart About Antibiotics Week is scheduled to be observed November 16-22. Get Smart About Antibiotics Week is an annual one-week observance to raise awareness of the threat of antibiotic resistance and the importance of appropriate antibiotic prescribing and use. 
The CDC has released The Core Elements of Antibiotic Stewardship for Nursing Homes.  
The Joint Commission has launched a free educational campaign on the appropriate and safe use of antibiotics.  
Join in celebrating International Infection Prevention Week (IIPW), October 18-24, 2015. IIPW, which takes place the third week of October each year, raises awareness of the role infection prevention plays to improve patient safety. The 2015 theme is Promoting engagement between patients, visitors, and healthcare professionals around infection prevention. 
The CDC and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have issued an alert to healthcare providers and facilities about the public health need to properly maintain, clean and disinfect or sterilize reusable medical devices.  
Throughout September, CDC and more than 3000 organizations—national, regional, and local governments, as well as private and public organizations—will join together in support of Emergency Preparedness Month. For Preparedness Month 2015, the Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response plans to focus on communities of preparedness.  
The World Health Organization (WHO) is calling for ambitious new global targets for diagnosis, treatment and cure of viral hepatitis. 
For further information about Infection Prevention and Safety Guidelines, Education and Training, Policies and Other Resources see the Organization for Safety, Asepsis and Prevention.


A non-profit organization, OSAP is a unique group of dental practitioners, allied healthcare workers, industry representatives, and other interested persons with a collective mission to promote infection control and related science-based health and safety policies and practices. OSAP supports this commitment to dental workers and the public through quality education and information dissemination. OSAP is a trusted source of information for dental educators, consultants, clinicians, researchers and policy makers that provides timely updates, advanced education, innovative training tools, referenced answers to vexing infection control questions and proven strategies to address compliance challenges. Its checklists, issue foci and position papers provide practical, scientifically sound information and recommendations on specific issues like H1N1, dental unit water quality, "green" infection control, instrument processing, surface asepsis, percutaneous injuries, and much more.

Examples of some of the tools include:

OSAP Infection Control Considerations for Dental Services in Sites Using Portable Equipment or Mobile Vans - Site Analysis

OSAP Infection Control Checklist for Dental Programs Using Mobile Vans or Portable Dental Equipment


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 Other Safety Resources

Other safety issues include ergonomics, eye protection, use of visible light cure units, noise control, handling of dental mercury, ventilation, nitrous oxide, radiation from dental x-rays, etc.

ADA resources on infection control

ASTDD and OSAP are working cooperatively to integrate infection control and safety throughout ASTDD's policies, best practices and other resources. Click here to see the implementation plan for this integration process.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
CDC has a healthcare worker health and safety webpage
Numerous resources and a searchable database
A collection of emergency preparedness resources and information 
OSHA standards and directives related to dentistry
Safety Net Dental Clinic Manual, Chapter 4, Section VIII
Numerous resources that apply to dental and other healthcare settings
Numerous resources that apply to dental and other healthcare settings
Toolkit for Making Written Material Clear and Effective This health literacy resource from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is an11-part Toolkit that provides a detailed and comprehensive set of guidelines to help you make written material in printed formats easier for people to read, understand, and use.  


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OSAP thanks its Super Sponsors for their support in 2015. Sponsorship does not imply endorsement by OSAP of a company's products or services.