Membership Matters - December 2017 - 25

established a new "standard of care,"
dentists did not probe every patient
in search of the elusive periodontitis
diagnosis. Similarly, treating TMD and
bruxism was left for the well-trained
few until lawsuits drove our profession
to attend to those joints like we did the
teeth. The courts have often served to
accelerate closing the gap between
what is known and what is practiced.
(See box.) This is true across broad
parts of our lives, not just dentistry.
Standard operating procedures for
medicine have evolved in large part
due to the courts determining after the
fact what should have been done.
Let's not become complacent
when it comes to airway screening
and treatment in dentistry. Traditional
continuous positive airway pressure
therapy, long the gold standard in
medicine for obstructive sleep apnea,
has come under attack because
compliance and mean disease
alleviation are so poor. Oral appliance
therapy is gaining ground in North
America much as it has in Europe
because efficacy is quite good and
there is excellent compliance. Payers
are slowing moving toward this as a
first line of treatment, and there will
be greater attention on dentistry, oral
appliance therapy and patient health.
We will be in the spotlight soon, and
that is both good and bad.
So where does that leave us,
and what should we do? Today,
approximately 6,000 of the 180,000
dentists in the U.S. treat obstructive

Top Dental
Lawsuits
Categories
1. Orthodontics
2. Supervised neglect
3. Endodontic therapy
4. Oral and implant surgery
5. Crown and bridge treatment
Other recurring themes
are adverse drug reactions,
sedation and anesthesia
complications, injection-related
paraesthesia, instrument
ingestion and inhalation and
soft tissue injury.

sleep apnea patients with oral
appliance therapy. From 250 to 400
dentists have restricted their practice
to sleep, and some include TMD.
Medicine and dentistry together
are falling behind in treating this
population. The need is growing, and
the supply of dentists and physicians
is insufficient to meet demand. To
provide the best care for your patients
in this area, consider:
1. Taking courses and learning about
obstructive sleep apnea;
2. Screening your patients and
practicing dentistry in an
airway-centric manner; and

3. Treating your patients for
obstructive sleep apnea.
If you choose to treat obstructive
sleep apnea using oral appliance
therapy in your practice, you will help
your patients have healthier lives, you
and your team will get to do some
very fulfilling dentistry and you will
augment your annual revenue with
a non-dental insurance procedure
that is well-reimbursed by medical
payers. Do not mishear me; this is not
as easy as it sounds. You must train
well, understand the different sales
cycle that medical procedures entail
and find your peace with a different
billing paradigm. The American
Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine,
the Pankey Institute, Sleep Apnea 101,
Dr. Kent Smith, Dental Sleep
Solutions Software, Sleep Group
Solutions and others are sources of
continuing education that will help
you down this path.
It is a worthwhile journey.
Dr. Murphy is the principal of
Funktional Business Consulting,
lead faculty for clinical education
at ProSomnus, serves on the guest
faculty at the University of Detroit
Mercy and is a regular presenter
on business development, practice
management and leadership at
the Pankey Institute. He lectures
internationally on leadership, practice
management, communication, case
acceptance, planning, dental sleep
medicine, occlusion and TMD.

Want to Learn More?
Dr. Murphy is presenting on Saturday, April 7,
at the 2018 Oregon Dental Conference.
www.oregondental.org

December 2017

25


http://www.oregondental.org

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Membership Matters - December 2017

From the Editor
New Members, Board Highlights
Events and Education
ODA Member Benefit of the Month: UPS
Compliance Corner: Requesting Patient Records
Advocacy in Action: Oregon Action for Dental Health — Listening and Learning
Through the Loupes: Peer Review Council Spotlight
Dr. Rickland Asai Sees Oregon as a National Leader
OHSU Considering Changes to Curriculum Based on Shifts in Dentistry
High School Programs Attract Next Generation of Oral Health Professionals
Airway Trumps Occlusion, Periodontics, Decay and Everything
Dental Foundation of Oregon: The Tooth Taxi Visits the Community Transitional School
Index of Advertisers
Membership Matters - December 2017 - intro
Membership Matters - December 2017 - cover1
Membership Matters - December 2017 - cover2
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 3
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 4
Membership Matters - December 2017 - From the Editor
Membership Matters - December 2017 - New Members, Board Highlights
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 7
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 8
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 9
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 10
Membership Matters - December 2017 - Events and Education
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 12
Membership Matters - December 2017 - ODA Member Benefit of the Month: UPS
Membership Matters - December 2017 - Compliance Corner: Requesting Patient Records
Membership Matters - December 2017 - Advocacy in Action: Oregon Action for Dental Health — Listening and Learning
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 16
Membership Matters - December 2017 - Through the Loupes: Peer Review Council Spotlight
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 18
Membership Matters - December 2017 - Dr. Rickland Asai Sees Oregon as a National Leader
Membership Matters - December 2017 - OHSU Considering Changes to Curriculum Based on Shifts in Dentistry
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 21
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 22
Membership Matters - December 2017 - High School Programs Attract Next Generation of Oral Health Professionals
Membership Matters - December 2017 - Airway Trumps Occlusion, Periodontics, Decay and Everything
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 25
Membership Matters - December 2017 - Dental Foundation of Oregon: The Tooth Taxi Visits the Community Transitional School
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 27
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 28
Membership Matters - December 2017 - 29
Membership Matters - December 2017 - Index of Advertisers
Membership Matters - December 2017 - cover3
Membership Matters - December 2017 - cover4
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