What a great meeting! The weather was great, the city was not overly busy as we all know it
can be. The facility was nice and our friends in the First District, led by Drs. Richard Bateman
and Allen Burleson put on a great meeting to conclude Dr. Rick Guthrie’s wonderful presidency.
The new logo was shown as well as we celebrated 150 years. And there is/was an app for the
meeting, a sign of things to come…
1006 people came to Gatlinburg of which were 340 dentists, 151 hygienists, 181 assistants.
8DDS was well represented for awards with Dr. Don Jones turning out a Fifty Year recognition.
Dr. George Lee now has a TDA Fellowship. Dr. Debbie Wallace was recognized for Volunteer
Service in a Foreign Country as was Dr. Kristy Dye (who raised the bar by earning Volunteer
Service in the United States as well).
Sunset passed without event for another four years.
Due to lengthy discussion about the gas tax, the professional business tax did not get repealed
this time. It is expected to be on the agenda in 2018.
A fluoride bill passed to regulate fluoride so that anti-fluoride bills will be tougher to come
Opioid legislation is due in 2018.
A wellness bill passed to exclude dental providers, etc. from immediate suspension from an
CE will be given for volunteering in a charity clinic.
And finally, the hygienists in pediatricians’ offices bill (SB790/HB667) stalled. As a reminder,
Matt Hill pushed this bill which would allow a RDH who works for a dentist to do fluoride and
sealants in a pediatrician’s office. The bill was not received well by the dentists or the
pediatricians and was not expected to pass. Such a bill could have raised our Pew score though.
The bill has cleared committee. This means that the bill could be amended to even include full
independent hygiene practice and have a vote. The vote could come up at any time next
session from the first day to the last day. The TDA switched stances from neutral to opposed
after it cleared committee to show solidarity with the pediatric dentists, who employed their
own lobbyist. Careful diligence is due and calls to our legislators will likely be required in the
future, especially if you see any children as patients!
UT Memphis will be expanding the EFDA enrollment from 24 to 35. Dr. Beauchamp and myself
along with a few others are on a task force to further research a solution to the bottleneck.
The biannual ethics test (open book pass/fail) is on the attorney general’s desk. This could
mean it would become a requirement as soon as next year.
TDA Membership advantages announced a discount plan with the Peabody Hotel in Memphis.
Dues statements payment options are a huge success! And with credit cards! Dues will rise
$25 next year.
TDA has announced another member benefit. Tennessee’s first MEWA (multiple employer
welfare arrangement) for health insurance per the ACA is from the TDA and has partnered with
United Health Care and will be effective August 1. The strength is in the numbers as it can save
you hundreds each month on health care insurance.
SAVE THE DATES: TDA Annual Meeting: May 4-6, 2018 in Franklin, TN
Dentsply is not controlling the meeting. They are simply sponsoring the speakers. I tell you this
as there has been some rumors and misinformation out there and anyone could be asked about
it by a vendor.
The speakers include: Dr. Douglas Lambert, Dr. Timothy Bizga, Ms. Lori Trost, and Dr. Don
Tyndall. Comedian Henry Cho will be our entertainer for the President’s Party.
I have the honor to be your obedient servant,