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  • 28 May 2023 10:27 AM | Heather Plewes-LaBerge (Administrator)

    Excerpts of an article published in the Western Standard 
    Click Here to read the full article

    by Christopher Oldcorn

    The department of Health said it has concerns as the cabinet expands its national dental care program, private employers currently offering dental care to most Canadians nationwide may transfer the expense to taxpayers. “It is something we are concerned about,” Lindy Van Amburg, director general of the task force, told the Senate Social Affairs committee. 

    Bill C-47 the Budget Implementation Act states all employers offering dental coverage must report this information to the Canada Revenue Agency by December 31. According to Blacklock’s Reporter, failure to comply could result in fines of $100. Van Amburg described this requirement as a data collection exercise. 

    According to the Canadian Dental Association, approximately 32% of Canadians do not have dental insurance. The current government program provides a tax-free payment of $650 per year for children under 12 in households with incomes below $70,000. The Cabinet suggested expanding the program to include individuals of all ages living in households with incomes below $70,000. Additionally, households earning between $70,000 and $90,000 would be eligible for reduced grants under the proposed plan.

    “Are there any provisions or mechanisms the government can use to monitor and prevent the practice of clawing back coverage by insurance companies?” asked Sen. Sharon Burey (ON).

    Parliament could not force employers to keep their plans, said Van Amburg. “The levers that exist in provinces — we’ve seen them used in Québec and other places, where they can legislate or regulate the coverage employers need to provide — is provincial and territorial jurisdiction,” said Van Amburg. “Those levers will not be available the same way for a federally delivered plan. But certainly, it's something we are concerned about and looking at very carefully as we finalize the design of the plan.”

    The Canadian Dental Hygienists Association (CDHA) expressed concerns on October 27 during testimony at the Senate National Finance committee. The CDHA was worried employers might choose to end private dental plans to save money. 

  • 25 May 2023 2:18 PM | Heather Plewes-LaBerge (Administrator)

    Fundraising for the DIAC Future of Dentistry Survey 2023 has been quite successful, but we're not at our goal yet - to fully fund this important program!

    If your company is not yet listed as a sponsor below, please consider adding your support to this cause. 

    For more info or to commit to a sponsorship, please email

    Thanks to those who have committed already:

  • 1 May 2023 2:43 PM | Heather Plewes-LaBerge (Administrator)

    As many DIAC Members may already know, our tireless Executive Director Rhonda Lawson is retiring at the end of June. As DIAC's executive director since 2018, Rhonda has been instrumental in implementing new programs for the Association, revitalizing existing programs, and supporting and sustaining our organization through the difficult pandemic years.

    Rhonda's governance expertise has allowed DIAC to flourish during her tenure. The Board of Directors and Committees of the Board are highly engaged, focused and productive. It is thanks to Rhonda that DIAC has its current Mission and Vision statements and the Strategic Plan that Rhonda facilitated in 2019 has served the Association well in the years that have followed.

    In fact, the Board is thrilled that a new Strategic Plan - under development since the Board's Offsite in February - will steer and shape the Association in the coming years, even after Rhonda has retired. She leaves a substantial legacy at DIAC and her presence will be greatly missed, even as her contributions to the Association continue to serve us.

    Rhonda's innumerable contributions to DIAC mean that she will leave very big shoes for her successor to fill, but the Board of Directors has confidence that the incoming Executive Director will be an extremely valuable addition to the Association.

    From April 1st until June 30th, Rhonda and DIAC's new Executive Director, Hafeeza Bassirullah will be working together to ensure a smooth transition for the many programs and services DIAC provides our members.

    We would like to extend a very warm welcome to Hafeeza!

    Hafeeza Bassirullah, Ed.D

    As an accomplished leader with proven experience executing programs, defining and shaping strategies, and transforming organizations, Hafeeza has extensive expertise implementing initiatives, policies, and programs to successfully enhance organizational effectiveness, create long-term partnerships, and deliver on the mission of organizations.

    Before joining DIAC, Hafeeza worked at the Real Estate Institute of Canada where she redefined, expanded, and elevated the organization’s educational programming. Previously, at the College of Immigration and Citizenship Consultants, she established the Education Department and developed the nationally recognized education program for the profession. She also championed change management principles which improved the overall operations, advocacy, and educational standards of the organization.

    At the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, Hafeeza worked with a team to transform the landscape of emergency management in the province of Ontario, enabling and empowering hospital staff and other health workers to make informed decisions during health emergencies.

    As an Instructor of health promotion courses at the Toronto Metropolitan University, Hafeeza inspires and motivates students to learn and be leaders and enablers in promoting health from a holistic perspective.

    Hafeeza holds a Doctor of Education degree with a focus on Curriculum, Teaching, and Learning from the University of Toronto and a Master of Education degree with a focus on Adult Education.

  • 28 Apr 2023 2:57 PM | Heather Plewes-LaBerge (Administrator)

    As you are likely aware, members of the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) are currently on strike.  This represents approximately 159,000 employees that provide a range of services for the public throughout the Federal Government.

    Some of these employees do provide a range of services for regulated parties and health care professionals subject to the Food and Drugs Act including:

    1.    Submission intake and initial processing prior to review,

    2.    Clinical trial application intake and management

    3.    Issuance of medical devices licences

    4.    Special Access Program intake and support

    During this labour disruption, essential services will continue to be delivered; however it is possible that you may experience delays.  We apologize for any inconvenience and assure you that we are doing everything possible to mitigate the impacts during this time to the extent possible.  Additionally, as it may be difficult to access some Government of Canada buildings many scheduled in person engagements are now being held virtually during this time.  

    The Government is making every effort to come to an agreement with the PSAC and return to normal operations as soon as possible.

    Thank you for your patience.

  • 5 Mar 2023 3:19 PM | Heather Plewes-LaBerge (Administrator)

    February 28, 2023 - A message from CDA President, Dr. Lynn Tomkins

    Good Afternoon,

    In collaboration with provincial and territorial dental associations, CDA has prepared the attached policy paper to serve as a roadmap for the federal government as it creates a long-term dental program for underserved Canadians. The policy paper, Bridging the Financial Gap in Dental Care: Building a sustainable and effective federally funded program, follows the federal government’s historic investment in dental care, announced in Budget 2022.

    CDA’s key recommendations include:

    • Promoting the delivery of dental care primarily through the existing network of dental offices, supplemented as needed by public clinics
    • Publicly funded coverage remaining a payer of last resort, after any privately funded coverage
    • Addressing human resource challenges and staffing shortages in the oral health sector
    • Ensuring that a dental care formula includes the full cost of treatment provided to patients

    Dental Care in Canada

    Canadians receive some of the best oral health care in the world, and the majority of Canadians visit the dentist every year. Dental care in Canada is delivered largely through private dental clinics owned and operated by highly trained and educated dental professionals. It is mainly financed through private dental coverage or via out-of-pocket payments. For more than a century, this system has provided quality dental care to thousands of patients and benefited the oral health of Canadians, which has improved in the past few decades.

    But even the best systems have gaps and challenges. Two-thirds of Canadians have private dental coverage that funds all or part of their dental care.  Without dental coverage, especially employer-sponsored benefits, the average Canadian would not be able to afford dental care. This is why the promised federal investment of $5.3 billion into Canadian dental care is so important.

    Also attached is a one-pager to provide a snapshot of the recommendations. Please feel free to reach out if you would like to meet regarding this paper. We would be pleased to have a discussion.

    Thank you,

    Dr. Lynn Tomkins

    CDA Policy Paper_Snapshot_One Pager.pdf




  • 5 Mar 2023 3:05 PM | Heather Plewes-LaBerge (Administrator)

    Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto, Ontario recently hosted several free webinars on Medical Device & AI Software Regulation as part of its Medventions Lecture Series.

    Content is geared heavily toward USA (FDA) but there are some excellent points made that would apply to Health Canada/Canada as well.

    Links to View:

    Medical Device & AI Software Regulation - Part 1

    Medical Device & AI Software Regulation - Part 2

  • 3 Feb 2023 11:04 AM | Heather Plewes-LaBerge (Administrator)

    On behalf of all our members, DIAC would like to offer our sincere condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Hyo Maier of The Aurum Group.


    A Tribute to Hyo from His Family:

    It is with great sadness that we announce the sudden passing of Hans Joachim ‘Hyo’ Maier, age 79, on January 2, 2023.

    Born in Tubingen, Germany on May 7, 1943, to adoring parents, Hans and Paula Maier, Hyo grew up in an idyllic, storybook town with his younger brother Gerhard, his many aunts, uncles and cousins - and within his parents’ lively circle of friends who showed him from an early age, the joy of human connection and a zest for life that would come to define his own style of living.

    At age 19, after completing an apprenticeship as a dental technician, Hyo immigrated to Calgary, Canada with just a suitcase and $100 - and his adventurous spirit. He quickly became a partner with his employer, and by 1971 had bought out his partners and renamed the company Aurum Ceramic Dental Laboratories. In the ensuing decades, fueled by Hyo’s vision, Aurum established itself as an international, industry-wide leader.

    In 1963, Hyo met his great love, best friend and soul mate Diana at English night school. They married in Tubingen, Germany December 1967 and shared 59 years of love and adventure raising their 3 children, delighting in their 7 grandchildren, and traveling to all corners of the world for business and pleasure with friends and family.

    Hyo was a purveyor of the good life and lived it enthusiastically and humbly. With his welcoming nature, contagious joie de vivre and larger than life spirit, he found reason to celebrate life with or without an occasion. To sit at his table and share a meal was how Hyo chose to show his love.

    His passion for food, wine and hospitality found its perfect pairing in La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs where he was a member and eventual Bailli of Canada affording him decades of pleasure with a lifelong friendship circle.

    To his last days, Hyo showed us how to live: with an unwavering passion for life; with a dedicated love for his wife; a devotion to his family and a vision and drive for his business. He was a true gentleman who lived without a complaint, a criticism, or an unkindness and radiated a positivity that lit up a room and our hearts. Life was reason enough to celebrate and he did so daily with a joy and generosity that will be his legacy.

  • 2 Nov 2022 10:26 AM | Heather Plewes-LaBerge (Administrator)

    DIAC Executive Director, Rhonda Lawson, and Manager of Communications and Member Services, Heather Plewes-LaBerge, were honoured to be invited to attend the ADTO's recent Black-Tie and Awards Gala at the CN Tower.

    Our member company Ivoclar sponsored the event.

    Photos feature Rhonda, Heather, Rob Mior of Ivoclar, ADTO President Karim Sahil, ADTO Administrator Veronica Ng, and others. 

    DIAC would like to thank the ADTO for the generous invitation and congratulate the event organizers on a lovely evening in a very memorable space!

  • 30 Sep 2022 12:50 PM | Heather Plewes-LaBerge (Administrator)

    September 26, 2022 - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

    CDC Updates Healthcare IPC Guidance for SARS-CoV-2

    On Friday, CDC updated the following infection prevention and control (IPC) guidance documents for U.S. healthcare settings:

    These updates have been made to reflect the high levels of vaccine- and infection-induced immunity and the availability of effective treatments and prevention tools. Additionally, to streamline and consolidate existing healthcare IPC guidance, the Interim Infection Prevention and Control Recommendations to Prevent SARS-CoV-2 Spread in Nursing Homes | CDC was archived. However, relevant information for nursing homes not otherwise covered in Sections 1 and 2 of the main healthcare IPC guidance have now been incorporated into Section 3: Setting-specific considerations.

    CDC recommends healthcare facilities reference updated Community Transmission metrics on a weekly basis to inform facility-level actions. Community Transmission remains the metric used to guide select actions in healthcare settings, which is different than the COVID-19 Community Levels used for non-healthcare settings. Community Transmission is used to allow for earlier intervention, before there is strain on the healthcare system, and to better protect the individuals seeking medical care in these settings.

    Summary of Key Updates:

    • Vaccination status is no longer used to inform source control, screening testing, or post-exposure recommendations.
    • Updated circumstances when universal use of source control is recommended, and universal use of personal protective equipment (PPE) should be considered.
    • Updated recommendations for testing frequency in asymptomatic individuals following exposure to someone with SARS-CoV-2 infection.
    • In general, Nucleic Acid Amplification Test, or NAAT is preferred, when possible, for testing asymptomatic individuals.
    • Clarified that screening testing of asymptomatic healthcare personnel, including those in nursing homes, is at the discretion of the healthcare facility.
    • Screening testing is recommended for admissions to nursing homes when Community Transmission levels are high.
    • In general, asymptomatic patients no longer require use of Transmission-Based Precautions (quarantine) following close contact with someone with SARS-CoV-2 infection and asymptomatic healthcare personnel (HCP) no longer require work restriction following a higher-risk exposure.
    • Clarified the types of long-term care settings for whom the healthcare IPC recommendations apply.

    These updates provide additional protection measures for patients and healthcare workers, especially in hospitals and nursing homes, where COVID-19 is more likely to spread quickly or cause severe disease if introduced.

    Healthcare personnel continue to be on the front line of the nation’s fight against COVID-19. By providing critical care to those who are or might be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, some healthcare personnel are at increased risk of infection from COVID-19. CDC recommends healthcare personnel get vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as possible. Examples of what it means to be “up to date” with vaccinations are described in Stay Up to Date with Your Vaccines.

    Dental healthcare personnel (DHCP) should regularly consult their state dental boards and state or local health departments for current information and recommendations and requirements specific to their jurisdictions, which might change based on level of community transmission in the county where their healthcare facility is located. As a reminder, DHCP are licensed by their state regulatory body and should practice according to their state dental practice acts or other relevant regulations.

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