February 18, 2011
TO ALL RCDS MEMBERS:
On February 14, 2011, the province of Ontario officially opened the public consultation process for input on the proposed regulatory amendments to the Healing Arts Radiation Protection Act that would allow dentists to use computed tomography (CT) in their dental offices.
“This is an important milestone,” explained College President Dr. Peter Trainor. “We are almost at the end of the
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process that hopefully will see dentists with the right to use dental CT scanners in their offices. This is a big breakthrough for the profession. It will significantly expand the range and scope of services available to the public from dentists while ensuring that patients are not exposed to unnecessary amounts of radiation.”
If the amendments are passed,Ontario dentists and the public of Ontario would have access to services that have been available from dentists in many other provinces and American states for a number of years. The use of CT scanners is becoming the standard for diagnosis and treatment planning of many oral conditions, particularly in the placement of dental implants.
Back in November 2009, Council approved, in principle, guidelines on cone beam computed technology. The matter was passed over to the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care to develop the necessary regulatory amendments to the Healing Arts Radiation Protection Act. Then in December 2010, at the request of the Ministry, a few additional changes were made by the College, including changing the College document to a standard of practice instead of a guideline.
The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care first approached the College in the fall of 2008 asking our support and assistance in lifting its moratorium on the designation of dental facilities to install and operate cone beam computed tomography scanners (CT scanners). The government was impressed at how the College had developed effective regulation models for the disposal of amalga
m waste and for the use of sedation and general anesthesia. Following the same model as the existing anesthesia and amalgam waste regulations and guidelines, the government wanted the College to put in place a number of mechanisms to ensure patient safety.
Under the proposed regulatory amendments to HARP, the College would be given the responsibility to:
• set qualifications, education, training and standards for dentists who use the technology, other than oral radiologists who already have the specific authority to use CT scanners;
• do office inspections to determine compliance;
• issue facility permits to operate the equipment;
• require periodic filing of information to the College;
• link the periodic filing of this information to the professional misconduct regulation.
“The College is delighted to have worked collaboratively with government on this very important initiative to expand access for the public to a safe and valuable diagnostic tool. It is a resounding vote of confidence in the integrity of our processes and an indication of the trust that government has in the College and in the dental profession,” explained the College President.
Information about the government’s public consultation process is available at www.ontariocanada.com/registry. This consultation period ends on March 30, 2011.
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Actually folks, I’d like to encourage you to work with the vendors and various societies and organizations to develop an educational website archiving pathology and cases et al associated with the impact and power of conebeam related diagnosis and treatment planning………..ALL VOLUNTEERS, take one mouse click forward…good onya Crescent St. lads and lassies
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