March 19, 2020 | Issue 2
Consider Donating PPE to Assist in COVID-19 Response
The Iowa Department of Public Health is encouraging businesses and organizations to donate extra personal protective equipment (PPE) to assist healthcare providers and facilities responding to COVID-19. Those wishing to donate should contact their local public health department or county emergency management agency.
Trump Administration Advises Delaying All Nonessential Medical Procedures
The Trump Administration on Wednesday urged Americans and healthcare providers to delay elective procedures across the country to ensure medical supplies go where they are most needed. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma said her agency will release guidance recommending providers limit all "nonessential" elective medical and surgical procedures, including dental procedures. 
ADA Offers Guidance for Determining Emergency Dental Procedures
Yesterday the ADA released guidance for determining if a dental procedure is an emergency, urgent, non emergency, or routine; noting that "this guidance may change as the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, and dentists should use their professional judgement in determining a patient's need for urgent or emergency care."
HIPAA Waiver for Phone Consults
Covered healthcare providers who want to use audio or video communication technology to provide telehealth/teledentistry to patients during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency can use any non-public facing remote communication product that is available to communicate with patients. The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is exercising its enforcement discretion to not impose penalties for noncompliance with the HIPAA Rules in connection with the good faith provision of telehealth/teledentistry using such non-public facing audio or video communication products during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency. This exercise of discretion applies to telehealth/teledentistry provided for any reason, regardless of whether the telehealth/teledentistry service is related to the diagnosis and treatment of health conditions related to COVID-19.   For more information visit the HHS website .
Get Answers to Pressing COVID-19 Questions
The ADA is partnering with the Organization for Safety, Asepsis, and Prevention to provide a free on-demand webinar on Friday, March 20. The content for the program is based on member questions received. A link to the webinar will be published by the ADA. If you are not already receiving ADA publications, members may sign up on the ADA website by clicking Update Personal Profile.
Iowa Workforce Development Offering Second Employer Webinar
Today at noon, the Iowa Workforce Development will host a second employer webinar related to unemployment insurance. The webinar is limited to 500 people and will be recorded and made available for playback. In addition to the webinar, the Iowa Workforce Development has resources available to assist dentists and staff, including a fact sheet and the COVID-19 Scenarios & Benefits Available Chart.
Governor to Host Press Conference Today at 3:00 PM
Governor Kim Reynolds has scheduled a press conference for today at 3:00 PM related to COVID-19 in Iowa. The governor has released two videos related to testing criteria and the state's efforts to implement President Trump's 15 days to slow the spread. Review the most current information from IDPH related to COVID-19 by clicking here.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) does not have any specific standards related to COVID-19. Some OSHA requirements may apply to preventing occupational exposure to COVID-19, and those are available on the U.S. Department of Labor website. Additional information is available within the CDC Interim Infection Prevention and Control Recommendations and on the ADA website.
CE Update
IDA understands many members were counting on upcoming continuing education for your 2020 license renewal. The Iowa Dental Board recognizes this concern as well, and they will make rule waivers available for licensees needing to obtain more hours through self-study than what is permitted, due to COVID-19. Given this, the IDA is looking into options to provide online continuing education courses when possible. More information on this process, and the criteria the IDB will use to consider these waivers, will be available soon.
IDA and ADA Voice Concerns Over Family First Cononavirus Response Act
Yesterday the IDA signed off on a letter submitted by the ADA to the Department of Labor regarding the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

Specifically, IDA voiced concerns that “t he leave requirements currently being negotiated may create an extreme hardship for these small businesses that do not have additional staff to cover for necessary employees who are out and that are already facing economic turmoil as a result of COVID-19.

Under both the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion and the Emergency Paid Sick Leave sections of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, the Secretary of Labor has the regulatory authority to exempt small businesses with fewer than 50 employees 'when the imposition of such requirements would jeopardize the viability of the business as a going concern.'

The ADA urges the Secretary to immediately act to issue these exemptions, and, recognizing that these requirements would jeopardize the viability of dental offices, issue them for all dental practices with fewer than 50 employees."