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Jan 13 2016
An article recently published by "The Associated Press" reports that more dentists are marketing in-office dental plans (commonly referred to as "membership plans" or "discount clubs") as a way of making care more affordable and encouraging people to get routine cleanings and check-ups. Under such plans, patients pay a set annual or monthly ... [continue reading]
Dec 11 2015
Since the advent of federal privacy regulations under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), dental offices have focused their attention on the security and safeguarding of the health information they gather on patients in the course of treatment. Concerns about patient privacy have forced offices to exercise caution on ... [continue reading]
Nov 10 2015
Today, many patients investigate your office prior to an initial appointment using Internet ratings sites such as Yelp, Healthgrades, Bestdentists, Angie’s List, and RateaDentist. A majority of consumers report to trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, meaning a single negative review can harm your practice by turning away ... [continue reading]
Oct 12 2015
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) is a federal law that was adopted to address the growing problem of unwanted telemarketing communications by regulating how businesses communicate with consumers through residential telephones, cell phones, text messages and faxes. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently issued a ... [continue reading]
Sep 2 2015
Due to the growing volume of information that is being transferred and stored away each day, businesses are beginning to realize the importance of adopting a records retention policy. The purpose of adopting such a policy is to establish an official procedure for managing records. A well-crafted records retention policy specifies a detailed method ... [continue reading]
Aug 11 2015
Dental radiographs provide information critical to the identification and treatment of oral health problems. For example, radiographs are the only reliable way to view the bone, roots, attachments, interproximal areas, and under and around restorations. Despite the significant benefit of such images, some patients refuse to have radiographs taken ... [continue reading]
Jul 8 2015
Dental offices are often tempted to classify temporary workers such as dental hygienists, associate dentists and in-house lab technicians as independent contractors rather than employees as a way to reduce costs. For example, employers must generally withhold federal income taxes, withhold and pay over social security and Medicare taxes, and pay ... [continue reading]
Jun 2 2015
As the new director of legal and legislative services at the Ohio Dental Association, I am pleased to participate in the “ODA Today”’s Legal Briefs column discussing various legal and ethical issues confronting dentists. The ODA regularly receives calls from our member dentists seeking guidance on how to handle specific scenarios ... [continue reading]
Mar 6 2015
This month, House Bill 463 will go into effect.  HB 463 was developed from a series of recommendations by the 2013 ODA House of Delegates aimed at improving access to quality, comprehensive dental care by focusing on delivery system enhancements and workforce development.  The bill was unanimously approved by the Ohio General Assembly ... [continue reading]
Mar 6 2015
ODA's director of legal and legislative services, Keith Kerns, has announced he is leaving the ODA to take over as the new executive director of the Ohio Optometric Association (OOA). Kerns has worked at the ODA for more than 13 years and has had a monthly column in the “ODA Today” during much of that time. In announcing his decision, ... [continue reading]
The views expressed in the articles and columns on are solely those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the view of the Ohio Dental Association (ODA). The columns are intended to offer opinions, information and general guidance and should not be construed as legal advice or as an endorsement by the ODA. Further, information posted on is not an endorsement by the ODA and should be viewed on an informational basis by users of the website. Dentists should always seek the advice of their own legal counsel regarding specific circumstances.