April 29, 2015
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Pennsylvania Dental Association Members Complete Courses on Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting

More than 5,000 dental professionals completed child abuse training for license renewal 

In response to Act 31, an amendment to legislation passed in 2014 requiring continued education and training about child abuse recognition and mandatory reporting, the Pennsylvania Dental Association (PDA) offered “Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting for Dental Professionals.” PDA’s Act 31 course is the only abuse recognition program customized specifically for dentists and their team members. More than 5,000 Pennsylvania dental professionals participated in the continuing education course. Nearly 20 courses were offered statewide.
 
Dentists, hygienists, EFDAs, and dental assistants completed the Department of Human Services and State Board of Dentistry approved training in child abuse recognition and reporting. These trainings are also required to renew all their professional licenses. 

“As dentists, who come into contact with children every day, we are considered mandatory reporters under the law,” said Dr. Wade Newman, PDA President. “We must protect not only the oral health of our patients, but also their overall well being. That means reporting suspected cases of child abuse to authorities.”

During the two-hour training sessions, dental professionals received instruction from a multidisciplinary panel of experts who addressed the legal, clinical, and social services aspects of recognizing and reporting suspected child abuse. 

“For many years, PDA has provided training on child abuse recognition and reporting to its dentists. Act 31 presented PDA with an ideal opportunity to educate the entire dental staff on the new mandates,” said Camille Kostelac-Cherry, CEO of PDA. “We are proud to offer the only child abuse program customized specifically for dentists and their teams.” 

Courses will be scheduled around the state throughout the next two-year licensure period so PDA member dentists and their staffs are fully trained and compliant with Act 31 standards.  

About the Pennsylvania Dental Association
Founded in 1868, the Pennsylvania Dental Association (PDA) is comprised of approximately 5,500 member dentists. It is a constituency of the American Dental Association (ADA), the largest and oldest national dental society in the world. PDA’s mission is to improve the public health, promote the art and science of dentistry and represent the interests of its member dentists and their patients. PDA is the voice of dentistry in Pennsylvania. For more information on the PDA, visit padental.org.