Summertime ... and the livin' is lively

July 22, 2009
Summertime at the ADAA is lively with the completion of our first Webinar, preparation for our annual conference, updates to our demographics survey, launching of new publications, and more!

Summertime may be the time for most folks to slow down, but that's not the case at ADAA. We have so much going on that it's hard to even notice the heat and the holidays.

In education, we completed our first Webinar with Vident and we're looking forward to more activity in that field. We are revising and developing courses for later this year and for 2010. These courses are in practice administration, infection control, radiology, oral pathology. You get the picture; we've been busy!

We are preparing for a truly exciting September as we plan for the Annual Conference in Honolulu, held in conjunction with the American Dental Association. With one the world's largest scientific and commercial exhibit halls and a wealth of educational, social, and touring opportunities, our joint convention with ADA offers dental assistants a once-a-year event with a basic registration fee of only $35. Go to to view it all and register online. Early registration discounts run until Sept. 3.

We have a special audio/visual treat that will become available this summer; something you can act on right now and it won't cost you a cent. The ADAA has partnered with Orlando Tech Community College's TV production unit to create an eight-minute Dental Assisting Career video, designed to explain and attract potential dental assistants to the career path.

This is a technically correct, contemporary presentation with high production values that clearly portrays the field and its practitioners in an engaging, desirable manner. It's something anyone who wants to promote our profession should be glad to have. You can view this video on our Web site at, and if you like it, order a free copy at [email protected].

And while you're at the Web site, nonmembers should check out the benefits of becoming an ADAA member. We have plenty of perks in the areas of professional liability insurance, accidental death insurance, educational discounts, free test grading, and more. There are optional benefits as well, such as discounts at hotels, prescriptions, rental cars, identity theft insurance, and Internet resume posting. Check it out at

There is more good news for the summer. We have welcomed four new local components to the ADAA family. Four! Wow! Things are getting active out there. We welcome Northwest Florida, Greater Baltimore, M.D., Southern Tier, N.Y., and Sand Hills, N.C.

We updated our periodic member demographic survey and are delighted to learn that ADAA members still have a lot of influence in the area of purchasing for the practice. When it comes to shopping, our members always say, "Yes, let's go shopping," and 61% of them shop and buy the products for the practice. Of the 39% who don't do the buying, 50% (!!) tell us that it's another dental assistant in the office who does it (probably another ADAA member). The other 50% say it's the dentist, and half recommend supplies to the dentist.

Two-thirds of our member-buyers (that impressive 61%) report that they also select the supplier. Apparently ADAA members like to shop and know what they want. Members can read the results of the entire survey in the September/October issue of the Journal.

Speaking of publications, summer brought out the newest member of the ADAA publishing family -- Business Beat, for practice administrators and educators who teach the business end of dentistry. If you aren't getting a copy, just let us know and we'll sign you up. We will need your mailing address in order to provide you with the next issue or two, and your e-mail address because we plan to go green and take Business Beat all electronic in the near future. Sign up for this by sending your information to [email protected] and write "Business Beat" in the subject line. We've also premiered our newest e-newsletter. It's called ADAA 24/7, and you can receive it by letting us know that you're interested. Send an e-mail to [email protected] with ADAA 24/7 in the subject line, and ask to be added to the distribution list.

Even with all this activity we're still enjoying summer and hope you are too. We have even more adventures and activities planned for the rest of the year, and we hope you'll keep in touch with us and benefit from all we do. Come join us. We're the people who make dental assisting a profession! [email protected].

Stephen E. Spadaro, President
American Dental Assistants Association