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Here are the most recent guidelines, jointly released by the CRDHA, CADA and the ADA&C, effective February 10, 2021: Dental Practice Guidelines during the COVID-19 Pandemic

For registrants familiar with Version 1.0 of the Joint Guidelines, we prepared a comparison document, including the rationale for changes: Comparison of V1 to V2.

For registrants familiar with CRDHA's Version 3 Guidelines, we prepared a comparison document: Comparison of CRDHA V3 Guidelines with New Joint Guidelines Version 1.0

November 25, 2020 email message: COVID-19 Updates

Contact Tracing and Dental Hygienists

On May 5, 2020, Alberta's Minister of Health, Tyler Shandro, announced an order to expand the number of healthcare practitioners who are able to assist in contract tracing. This order included dental hygienists. Since then, the College has received a number of inquiries as to how this affects their reporting under the Continuing Competence Program (CCP).

Below are answers to some of the frequently asked questions (FAQs):

As part of the practice of dental hygiene, a CRDHA registrant may act as a clinician, educator, researcher, administrator, health promoter, and/or consultant. Hours working in any practice environment will count toward the required practice hours. (Refer to CCP Rule 2.4.)

It is the responsibility of the registered dental hygienist to evaluate their practice and declare their practice hours accurately. (Refer to CCP Rule 3.2.)

Examples of questions to consider in the evaluation process when determining whether practice hours meet CCP requirements:

  1. In the capacity of your employment, are you using your dental hygiene knowledge, skills, attitudes and judgments? (Refer to Code of Ethics 6.4.)
  2. Were you hired because you are a regulated health professional?
  3. In your work, do you uphold the principles, standards, laws and regulations of the dental hygiene profession? (Refer to Code of Ethics 6.1.)

You are reminded it is your professional responsibility to perform the necessary self-evaluation to determine your level of competency specific to your practice setting. (Refer to Practice Standards 1, Professional Responsibility.)

Program credits cannot be claimed for activities that occur as part of the expectations of the dental hygienist’s regular employment. (Refer to CCP Rules 2.3.)

Continuing Competence Program (CCP) Uploads Temporarily Suspended

As the College migrates to a new registrant database, the ability of registrants to upload CE and view their transcripts has been temporarily suspended. This is to preserve the integrity of the data.

When the new database is fully functional, all CE submissions to-date will be approved and  CCP credits revised. The College wants to assure registrants that as long as their uploads to-date are accurate, there is no cause for concern.

The mandatory webinar, Protecting Patients from Sexual Abuse and Misconduct, must still be completed by December 31, 2020. Please retain your certificate until CE submissions are open in the new registrant database.

The College will advise registrants when CE submissions are open in the New Year. 

Pre-Procedural Mouth Rinses

The College of Registered Dental Hygienists of Alberta is aware of recently published research showing that a hydrogen peroxide pre-procedural rinse is largely ineffective in inactivating SARS-CoV-2. Also, a published systematic review found no evidence to support it’s use.

The CRDHA is working with the other oral health regulators to assess our joint guidelines. 

In the interim, we would encourage all registrants to continue to review current, relevant literature in order to assist them in making their best clinical judgement to mitigate risk of virus transmission.