UPDATE: The TDA added a release to its website on the Governor's announcement.
URGENT ALERT: Governor Abbott Announces Plans to Reopen Texas’ Dental Practices
April 27, 2020
Today, Governor Abbott announced much anticipated plans to safely reopen Texas’ dental practices. Specifically, the Governor’s plans permit dental practices to open on Friday, May 1, 2020.
It is important to note that the Governor’s plans, specifically Executive Order 19, permit the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE) to promulgate “emergency rules” to dictate “minimum standards for safe practice.”
We anticipate the TSBDE will meet soon to discuss emergency rules and potential limitations on dental practices and procedures. The TDA will represent the membership at this meeting and advocate for the full opening of Texas dental practices. The TDA will provide the membership with an update as soon as an update is available.
The TDA respectfully but aggressively advocated for safely reopening Texas dental practices so patients may safely receive the care they need. Your TDA team worked directly with the Governor, his top executives, top members of the Strike Force team, lawmakers, lawmakers’ staff, and many others to accomplish this important goal (see example). Your team did so with determination and a sense of urgency.
Governor Abbott’s plans do not force dental practices to reopen. Dentists are the head of the dental team and must exercise independent professional judgement when deciding whether to safely reopen. This decision should include strict adherence to requirements regarding personal protective equipment and implementation of COVID-19 workplace safety guidelines to operate safely while protecting the health of patients, dentists, and dental team members.
As we enter this new phase together, TDA continues to focus on you, the member dentist, and your patients. Safety is an absolute priority with everything TDA has pursued and everything we will continue to pursue.
The TDA also continues to represent you and your patients. Now more than ever this is a time to come together, work together, and to get back to what we do best which is to care for Texas dental patients and change their lives. Let’s get back to caring for Texans and let’s do it together.
If the TDA can assist you in any way, we are proud to do so. Reach out to us and we will do all we can to help. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your being a valuable member of organized dentistry.
Dr. Charles W. Miller
TDA President, 2019-2020
The Texas Dental Association has announced the following on its Facebook page.
TDA is pleased to report that Governor Abbott announced today that dental practices may open May 1 but must follow certain guidelines. The guidelines have not yet been made available. The TDA will provide an email to all members as soon as all information is obtained and analyzed.
The TSBDE website states so far that "The Dental Board is reviewing Governor Abbott's latest Executive Order and will provide an update soon. Please check back for updates."