1. Novel Coronavirus, SARS CoV-2 Updates

At the CDHNS, our goal is to ensure that safe, timely, appropriate oral health care is provided to Nova Scotians during this pandemic. At the same time, we must work to minimize the spread of the novel coronavirus, including community transmission, and ensure the supply of human resources, supplies, and equipment are sufficient to provide necessary medical and dental care during this time.

On May 29, 2020, the Nova Scotia government issued a revised order under the Health Protection Act that allowed previously restricted regulated health professionals, including the oral health professions, to begin engaging in in-person and virtual care in private practices on June 5, 2020, providing they remained within scope and that the Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMOH) approved the regulatory body's return to work action plan. On May 29, 2020, the CMOH notified the four oral health regulators that their phased-in Return to Work Guidelines for Oral Health Professions of Nova Scotia had been approved. As such, effective June 5, 2020, the CDHNS removed its strong recommendation that dental hygiene practices close.  

All Nova Scotia's oral health professions agreed to a phased-in approach, rather than an immediate resumption of full services. This phased-in approach began on June 5, 2020 with the provision of emergency and urgent care. The current Stage (comprehensive care) began on June 19, 2020 and is outlined below. 

Stage 3 began June 19, 2020:  As of June 19, 2020, all oral health care private practices (e.g., dental, dental hygiene, denturist practices) are able to provide comprehensive care (emergency, urgent, and non-urgent (elective) care. Dental hygienists must follow the protocols set out by the CDHNS. (See Tab 1 of the Return to Work Guidelines for Oral Health Professions of Nova Scotia) and the Nova Scotia Government's Reopening Guidance for Health Care Settings.

On October 4, 2021, the province began its cautious approach to Phase 5 reopening. The oral health regulators have determined that it is most appropriate to remain with the existing Stage of protocols re: provision of oral health care. This was determined after careful consideration of the uncertainty of the trajectory of the COVID-19 epidemiology.  We will be re-evaluating this on an ongoing basis, in response to changing epidemiology, and with direction from Dr. Strang.

It is critical that all dental hygienists comply with the established protocols. Further, dental hygienists are responsible for ensuring that their clients comply with the protocols, where applicable.

Most Recent Return to Work Guidelines for Oral Health Professions of NS (Tab 1 - Dental Hygienists)

Visit the Public Health Agency of Canada's website on COVID-19, for updates on the current Canadian situation, facts about vaccines and national travel requirements, as well as links to helpful tools, such as the COVID-19 Visit Risk Calculator and Decision Aid developed by the National Institute on Ageing.   

Additional Federal and Provincial Guidance and Statements

PHAC Joint Statement on Unproven Therapies for COVID-19 Mar 31 2020

COVID-19: Pandemic Guidance for Health Care Sector

NS Crisis Hub Apr 23 2020

2. FDHRC/NDHCB Statement to Stakeholders - Sept 27, 2021

On behalf of the Federation of Dental Hygiene Regulators of Canada (FDHRC) and the National Dental Hygiene Certification Board (NDHCB), we are announcing the formal decision to amalgamate our two organizations into a single national entity, effective January 1, 2022. An amalgamation agreement was approved by the boards and members of both FDHRC and NDHCB in a series of special meetings held on August 17, 2021.

The new organization will be incorporated under the name of the Federation of Dental Hygiene Regulators of Canada (FDHRC). The FDHRC will operate from the current NDHCB office in Ottawa and will provide the same professional leadership and quality assurance as always, while continuing to ensure the protection of the public.

Please read the attached document for full details. 

3. Brushing Up on Mouth Care

On December 4, 2018, the Brushing up on Mouth Care website was relaunched after being redesigned. This website has a suite of updated open access resources to support the delivery of optimum daily mouth care for those who may be dependent on others for their care. This includes a link to Nova Scotia Dept of Health and Wellness’s Long-Term Care Requirements (including oral care). There are sections for health care professionals, administrators, educators and family/care givers. Check it out at http://brushingup.ca/ 2018 12 10 Brushing Up on Mouth Care Image

4. Prevent More to Treat Less

The College of Dental Hygienists of Nova Scotia has commissioned a White Paper on Prevent More to Treat Less

White Paper

5. Tooth Bleaching/Whitening

What should the Nova Scotia public know about whitening their teeth?  Please read the College of Dental Hygienists of Nova Scotia Position on Tooth Bleaching/Whitening

 

 

 

 

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