In an effort to help you during this unprecedented time, we are updating you on what the Arizona Dental Association (AzDA) has been doing regarding the COVID-19/coronavirus situation. AzDA continues to monitor recent developments and has been in communication with Arizona health officials, legislators, and the Arizona State Board of Dental Examiners (BODEX). We are also advocating on your and other dentists behalves as financial relief packages are discussed, and we are detailing how this situation is already impacting and may continue to impact the dental profession. Our efforts will not stop.
We know that many organizations including the American Dental Association (ADA) have issued recommendations about postponing elective procedures in dental offices. We are actively communicating with state officials and awaiting their directives and/or guidance, which we hope will be forthcoming and which we will share. On March 18, 2020, the Arizona State Board of Dental Examiners also released a “COVID-19 Statement,” (found here), which your Arizona Dental Association supports.
On March 19, 2020, Governor Ducey issued an Executive Order applying to “all non-essential or elective surgeries, including elective dental surgeries, that utilize personal protective equipment or ventilators.” The Governor’s Executive Order can be viewed here.
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DISCLAIMER: The content contained herein is informational only and should NOT be considered legal, professional, financial, tax, medical, dental, insurance, or business advice.
Today, Governor Doug Ducey issued Executive Order 2020-18, which institutes a “Stay home, Stay healthy, Stay Connected” policy to slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect Arizonans, which starts on Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at 5 p.m. Under this policy, all individuals in the State of Arizona shall limit their time away from their place of residence or property, except:
The Order goes on to state that “All persons may leave their place of residence only for Essential Activities, to participate in or receive Essential Government Functions, or to participate in or fulfill Essential Functions outlined in [Governor Ducey’s March 23] Executive Order 2020-12. The Governor’s full Executive Order can be viewed here, and it is recommended that you read it in its entirety to see how it impacts your daily activities. Below are answers to some common questions relating to Governor Ducey’s recent Executive Order and some of the ways in which it applies to dentistry.
Q: Does this recent Executive Order Require Dental Offices to Close?
NO.In Governor Ducey’s March 23 Executive Order (2020-12), a category ofEssential Functionsis“Healthcare and Public Health Operations,”which include dental offices.Seehttps://azgovernor.gov/file/34270/download?token=OFBiGeJI(this is a downloadable PDF). Thus dental offices can remain open, since the Governor’s recent Executive Order provides an exception for “Essential Functions” as detailed above.
Q:Since Dental Offices Do Not Have to Close, Are Dentists Allowed to Perform Any and All Dental Services?
NO.On March 19, the Governor issued an Executive Order, directed at licensed healthcare provider(s) (i.e. dentists) thatdisallows“all non-essential or elective surgeries, including elective dental surgeries, that utilize personal protective equipment or ventilators.”The Governor’s March 19 Executive Order tells dentists and other dental professionals what servicescannot be performedwithin those dental offices - “all non-essential or elective surgeries, including elective dental surgeries, that utilize personal protective equipment or ventilators.” The Governor’s March 19 Executive Order “shall remain in place until further notice,” of which there has been none.The entire March 19 Executive Order can be found athttps://traffic.libsyn.com/azda/Arizonas_Governor_Issues_Executive_Order.pdf
Q:If a Dental Office is Only Open for Treating Dental Emergencies, What Else Does Governor Ducey’s Recent Executive Order Require?
Governor Ducey’s March 30, 2020 Order provides that “Businesses and entities that remain open shall implement rules and procedures that facilitate physical distancing and spacing of individuals of at least six feet.”SeeParagraph 11. The Order goes on to provide that “All businesses that are classified as Essential Functions” (i.e. dental offices) “shall establish and implement social distancing and sanitation measures established by the United States Department of Labor or the Arizona Department of Health Services.”SeeParagraph 11(a). For dentists, it would also include the appropriate measures for sanitation, sterilization, contamination, infection, etc. for dental offices.
Q: How Long Does the Governor’s recent“Stay home, Stay healthy, Stay connected” Executive Order Last?
April 30, 2020. The Executive Order clearly states it “shall be in effect until April 30, 2020, unless extended.”SeeParagraph 17.
Your Arizona Dental Association (AzDA) continues to reach out to the Governor’s Office and BODEX for further information and updates, and when received, we will share them with you.
Be sure to have YOUR voice heard as well—join AzDA and write your elected officials by clicking HERE (it only takes 2 minutes).
Please note, we will continue to share updates and information as it becomes available, so please monitor your email and make sure AzDA emails are not blocked from your account. You, your teams, your families, and your practices remain in our thoughts.
As a group, we are all in this together,
Your AzDA Family
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