Get the Latest Information on COVID-19

Quick Link Resources:

Amended Public Health Order 20-29 (June 25)
CDA COVID Office Exposure Protocol
Counterfeit Respirators / Misrepresentation of NIOSH-Approval
CDA/MDDS Interim Guidance For PPE
Disinfectants for Use Against SARS-CoV-2
CDC: Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Facility
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Burn Rate Calculator
ADA Return to Work Toolkit
Sourcing Standards for Safe Dental Supplies
ADA COVID-19 Coding and Billing Interim Guidance
CDPHE COVID-19 Updates
CDC Optimizing Supply of PPE Guidance


Revised Public Health Order Now Available

June 25, 2002
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment released a revised public health order today for voluntary or elective surgeries and procedures in Colorado.

June 25 Public Health Order 20-29

  • Very few changes were made in this third amended PHO, however, there are a few items to note:
    During aerosol-generating procedures conducted on patients assumed to be non-contagious, the workforce should use an N95 respirator or a respirator that offers a higher level of protection such as other disposable filtering facepiece respirators, PAPRs, or elastomeric respirators, if available.”
  • The order emphasizes multiple times that nonmedical personnel, patients and visitors should wear a face covering “that covers both the nose and mouth.”
     
  • In the prior PHO, a 15-minute waiting period after the patient has exited was required (to allow for droplets to settle) before cleaning the operatory. This text was removed in the new PHO and replaced with: “The dental Facility must implement administrative and engineering controls to minimize the risk of potentially infectious aerosols spreading during and between patient appointments and throughout the facility.”
  • Regarding patient screening protocols facilities should: “Telephone screen all patients and visitors for symptoms and exposure consistent with COVID-19. If the patient reports symptoms of COVID-19, avoid non-emergent dental care. If possible, delay dental care until the patient has recovered. Patients’ and visitors’ temperatures should be taken upon arrival to the building using a touchless thermometer or one that is properly cleaned and disinfected after each use, following manufacturer’s instructions.”
     
  • Hand sanitizer should contain 60-95% alcohol to reduce the risk of disease transmission.
This PHO is in effect for one month, until 11:59 p.m. on July 24, 2020.

 


State Offers Free N95 Mask Disinfecting

June 18, 2020
The Colorado Unified Coordination Center received a Battelle Critical Care Decontamination System that cleans and disinfects used N95 respirators for reuse. The system will be installed at the Adams County Fairgrounds in the Exhibit Hall. The system will be returned to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) when no longer needed.

All healthcare personnel are eligible for the free N95 decontamination, including dentists and dental hygienists.

Read more.
Fill out an enrollment form.


Revised Public Health Order Now Available

May 27, 2020
Late last night a revised Public Health Order was released by CDPHE. 

We encourage you to read the newest version of the Public Health Order in its entirety. Several items were modified. This order is in effect until 11:59 p.m. on June 24, 2020.

Highlights related to dentistry in the revised Public Health Order include:

  • PPE changes – N95 respirators should be NIOSH-certified and masks must be cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. In addition, bonnets and booties have now been removed from the list of required PPE supplies. (PHO 20-29, page 5)
     
  • Extended use of PPE – “Extended use of facemasks and respirators should only be undertaken when the facility is at contingency or crisis capacity and has reasonably implemented all applicable administrative and engineering controls. Such controls include selectively canceling elective and non-urgent procedures and appointments for which PPE is typically used by dental health care providers. Extended use of PPE is not intended to encourage dental facilities to practice at a normal patient volume during a PPE shortage, but only to be implemented in the short term when other controls have been exhausted.” (PHO 20-29, page 5)
     
  • Operatory rest following AGPs – “To clean and disinfect the dental operatory after a patient without suspected or confirmed COVID-19, wait 15 minutes after completion of clinical care and exit of each patient to begin to clean and disinfect room surfaces. This time will allow for droplets to sufficiently fall from the air after a dental procedure, and then be disinfected properly.” CDC reference. (PHO 20-29, page 7)
     
  • Aerosol generating instruments – In the prior version of the order, “instruments known to generate aerosols” (ultrasonic scalers, air polishers/prophy jets, etc.) were not allowed for dental cleanings. This clause has been completely removed, implying that all instruments may be used for dental procedures.

Read more.


CDC Releases Framework for Non-COVID-19 Clinical Care

May 15, 2020
According to the CDC Division of Oral Health, “dental healthcare personnel are licensed by their state regulatory body and should practice according to their state dental practice acts or other relevant regulations. CDC is not a regulatory agency and does not publish regulations or other legally enforceable standards related to infection prevention and control in dental healthcare settings. All healthcare facilities should be aware of updates to local and state public health recommendations and dental healthcare personnel should regularly consult their state dental boards or other regulating agencies for information and rules specific to their jurisdictions.”

Read more.


Delta Dental of Colorado and CDA Announce Collaboration 

May 15, 2020
For the past two months, the leadership of Delta Dental of Colorado (DDCO) and the CDA have been discussing the significant effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on dentistry in Colorado. Both organizations are deeply concerned about the health and welfare of dentists, dental team members and patients. We are building off a strong foundation of mutual respect and dedication to improving the oral health of all Coloradans. The CDA is encouraged by the industryleading commitment from DDCO and their recently announced $30 million relief package to support providers, the insured, the community, and other DDCO stakeholders. DDCO is extremely supportive of the CDA leadership and its efforts in providing best practices and resources to dentists during this difficult time. 

Read more.


PPE Update from CDA President Dr. Jeff Kahl and TDSC Director of Strategic Relations Michael Wilgus

May 7, 2020


Amended Public Health Order 20-29 Issued

May 6, 2020
Public Health Order 20-29 was amended by CDPHE and released this afternoon. This order provides some clarification and modifies text of the original order that was released on April 27. The CDA submitted comments to the health department and met with officials last week to voice concerns about the restrictions on aerosolizing procedures during the Safer at Home phase of state recovery.

The CDA is grateful that most of our advocacy efforts resulted in a direct impact on the health department’s decision to permit several aerosolizing procedures while achieving the safety goals that the state and the CDA remain focused on during this pandemic.

Key highlights in the amended version include:

  • A revision of priorities in Section II for the resumption of voluntary/elective procedures.
  • A requirement that offices have a formal plan (as well as already existing guidelines) to ensure adherence with the principles outlined in the order.
  • Expanded requirements around facility reassessments every two weeks.
  • A revision of protocols for dentists treating patients with and without COVID symptoms.

Read more.


PPE Donning and Doffing: CDC Sequence for COVID 19

May 1, 2020
Make sure your donning and doffing technique is on point with these steps from Hippo Education.


ADA Interactive Map Shows COVID-19 Dental Regulations By State

May 1, 2020
The ADA recently released a COVID-19 State Mandates and Recommendations webpage which features an interactive map that illustrates the various dental regulations by state and includes case totals.

Dentists can view how COVID-19 is affecting the dental profession in each state with a visual comparison. The state-by-state list further breaks down mandates and recommendations from state entities, as well as licensure updates related to COVID-19.
 
The COVID-19 State Mandates and Recommendations webpage is updated regularly Monday-Friday. You can find other COVID-19 resources from the ADA on the ADA Coronavirus (COVID-19) Center for Dentists.


New Executive and Public Health Orders Issued

April 27, 2020
Several orders have been released in the past 24 hours from the governor’s office, DORA, CDPHE and local government entities.

We have several questions and concerns about this public health order and have submitted comments to CDPHE. Once we have clarification on these concerns, we will communicate that to you immediately. Please know that we are working diligently to clarify this so you can resume practice under the executive order as quickly as possible. 

Several local governments have also issued stay-at-home orders. City/county orders may differ from the state and we encourage you to visit your local government’s web page to seek clarification on municipal rules. Additional information can be found in the state’s Safer at Home FAQ (under Local Governments).


DORA Communication & Joint Update from the CDA and CODHA

April 24, 2020
This morning, DORA released a statement to every dental licensee in Colorado regarding the expiration of Executive Order D 2020 027 – the Temporary Cessation of All Elective and Non-Essential Surgeries and Procedures.

While Colorado is entering the “Safer-at-Home” phase of its recovery plan on April 27, dentists should NOT expect to return to work as normal on April 27. DORA’s statement stresses that dentists “should not expect to change any (of your) current protocols on April 27th until further official notice.” In addition, “elective procedures should not take place until the Governor has issued these directives.
 
To be clear, this notice implies that dentists should NOT plan to see patients on April 27 for non-essential services. A new executive order is expected from Gov. Polis no later than April 27. This order will provide guidance for dental practices moving forward into this next recovery phase.
Read more.

ADA Releases PPE Guidance

April 18, 2020
As some states are preparing to consider reopening their dental offices, the ADA has issued interim guidance related to PPE. In these states that are considering reopening when the state mandates are lifted, the ADA is encouraging dentists to exercise professional judgment and carefully consider the availability of appropriate PPE to minimize risk of virus transmission. 

Currently, FDA approved tests for COVID-19 are not available to dentists in the U.S. Therefore, dentists should be aware that asymptomatic healthy appearing patients cannot be assumed to be COVID-19 free. The ADA noted that local or state government decisions regarding closures, including restrictions regarding elective health care, supersede the association’s recommendations. Additional guidance documents are expected from the ADA in the near future regarding protocols for office and treatment procedures.

Read the statement.
Read the guidance on masks and face shields.
Read the guidance on understanding mask types.


Colorado Governor Extends Non-Essential Procedure Suspension 

April 7, 2020
Last night, Gov. Polis signed an executive order extending the state’s stay at home mandate. Gov. Polis also extended the temporary suspension of elective and non-essential surgeries and procedures to preserve PPE. These executive orders are in effect through April 26 at the earliest.* 

This order continues to restrict all voluntary or elective surgeries or  procedures, whether medical, dental, or veterinary. A voluntary or elective surgery or procedure means that the surgery can be delayed for a minimum of three months without undue risk to the current or future health of the patient as determined by the guidelines developed by the hospital, surgical center or other treating medical facility. Rural and critical access hospitals are strongly advised to follow this guidance but are not mandated to do so under this executive order. 

The Colorado Dental Association aligns its recommendation to temporarily suspend elective/non-essential surgeries with the governor’s order.

Read Gov. Polis’ Executive Order

* Residents in Denver are ordered by Mayor Hancock to stay at home through April 30. This order also mandates the temporary suspension of elective and non-essential surgeries and procedures through April  30. 
Read more.


ADA Issues New Interim Recommendation and Treatment Decision Resources

April 2, 2020

Last night, the American Dental Association issued a new interim recommendation that “dentists keep their offices closed to all but urgent and emergency procedures until April 30 at the earliest.” With new cases of the coronavirus still on the rise, the ADA is urging dentists to comply with recent CDC guidance to continue only providing emergency or urgent dental care until this date. The ADA also released Interim Guidance for Minimizing Risk of COVID-19 Transmission and corresponding flowcharts to help guide dentists in making informed treatment decisions during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The CDA continues to work with the governor’s office, CDPHE and DORA to monitor the COVID-19 situation in Colorado. We know that you want to get back to work, to provide for your team members and to care for your patients. Our efforts are focused on helping that happen as soon as possible, but we must acknowledge that your safety and that of your staff, family and community are the top priority. Coronavirus cases in Colorado are still expected to peak in the coming weeks, and it would not be surprising to see additional mandates from the state level emerge in the near future. The CDA will keep dentists informed as more information is available. 


CDA COVID-19 Letter to Gov. Polis 

March 30, 2020
Good afternoon Governor Polis,

On behalf of more than 3,500 members of the Colorado Dental Association (CDA), we commend you on your decision to postpone all elective surgeries and issue a Stay at Home order to slow further spread of COVID-19. At this uncertain and troubling time in our history it is paramount that we have strong and decisive leadership like yours. We support your actions for taking the necessary steps to protect our community members’ health.

With an increasing number of COVID-19 cases and the associated strain on the broader healthcare system, the CDA strongly believes it is critical to continue to see dental emergencies in our dental clinics and offices. Our goal is to keep patients suffering from dental emergencies away from our Colorado emergency rooms and hospitals to preserve capacity there. Safely treating their dental emergencies within our offices will maintain their health and safety as well as the health of the community as a whole. 
Read more


What is a Dental Emergency? Guidance and Best Practices

March 20, 2020
This guidance may change as the COVID-19 pandemic progresses. Dentists should use their professional judgment in determining a patient’s need for urgent or emergency care.

On March 19, Gov. Polis issued an executive order to limit all treatment to emergency care to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and conserve PPE. An executive order has the force of law and is subject to criminal charges or legal action if not followed. In his order, he listed permitted surgeries or procedures.

Surgeries or procedures are permitted when there is:

  • A threat to the patient’s life
  • A threat of permanent dysfunction to an extremity or organ system
  • A risk of metastasis or progression of staging of a disease or condition or
  • A risk that the patient’s condition will rapidly deteriorate if the procedure or surgery is not performed.

The executive order recommends delaying any procedure that can be postponed for three months without undue risk to the patient’s current or future health, but also leaves some room for interpretation in the dental profession. The ADA has created a list of what are considered dental emergencies as well as dental urgent care situations.
Read more


Gov. Polis Signs Executive Order:
Elective/Non-Essential Procedures Suspended

This afternoon, Gov. Polis signed an executive order temporarily suspending elective and non-essential surgeries and procedures to preserve important medical equipment, like personal protective equipment and ventilators, needed to combat COVID-19. The executive order is in effect from March 23 to April 14, with the exception of rural and critical access hospitals. This includes all voluntary or elective surgeries or procedures, whether medical, dental, or veterinary. 

Permitted surgeries or procedures are permitted when there is:

  1. A threat to the patient’s life
  2. A threat of permanent dysfunction to an extremity or organ system
  3. A risk of metastasis or progression of staging of a disease or condition or 
  4. A risk that the patient’s condition will rapidly deteriorate if the procedure or surgery is not performed.  

Read the full press statement
Read the full executive order

The state of Colorado is requiring any healthcare provider, not part of a hospital facility or business, who has PPE, ventilators, respirators and anesthesia machines to inventory supplies no later than March 26. More details will be forthcoming on how to submit the inventory to the state including potential exemptions for supplies that are required for the provision of critical healthcare services. The CDA will let you know as soon as more information is available. 


Cybercriminals Leveraging National Crisis to Target Businesses

March 17, 2020
Cybercriminals are now leveraging our national crisis to target businesses of all sizes by launching cyberattacks and phishing campaigns in order to exploit us at a potential time of weakness. There have been warnings issued by government agencies related to cybercriminals targeting businesses that are turning on remote access to their systems in order to help with business continuity.

Remote access is a very powerful tool but, if not implemented correctly, may result in a cyber or ransomware attack against the business. As businesses rush to close their physical operations and move to a remote workforce, the improper configuration of these remote access systems can be an easy way for cybercriminals to attack.
Read more


CDA/ADA Issues Recommendation to Postpone Non-Essential Treatment

March 16, 2020
As the information and science around COVID-19 continues to evolve, the CDA has maintained an ongoing dialogue with the American Dental Association (ADA), Colorado governor’s office and Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE). We want to ensure that we are making the best decisions with the information and science available in a well-coordinated manor with other health agencies. After assessing the available information here in Colorado and in coordination with the ADA we are issuing the following guidance.

The CDA and ADA recommend that all dentists close their offices for three weeks to patients seeking elective and non-urgent care. During that time dentists should provide only emergency dental care and medically necessary care. This will allow us to care for our most critical patients, while also alleviating the burden that emergency dental care would put on hospitals.
Read more


COVID-19 Guidance for Your Practice

March 16, 2020
The CDA has ongoing communication with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), as well as the governor’s office to be sure that our response to this rapidly changing pandemic is consistent with the best science available and public health protocols. The continued spread of COVID-19 pressures all of us to crisis plan and react to a rapidly changing situation.

At this time there is not a state or national requirement for dentists to cease practicing, however, this decision is ultimately up to each dental practice and we encourage practice owners to assess all risks associated with dental staff and patient safety.
Read more


CDPHE Strongly Advises Mountain Residents and Visitors to Minimize Contact

March 15, 2020
Due to extensive spread of COVID-19 in a number of mountain resort communities, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) strongly recommends that anyone who lives in or has visited those communities in the past week minimize their contact with other people to reduce the spread of the virus.

Anyone who has been in Eagle, Summit, Pitkin, or Gunnison counties in the past week should minimize all contact with other people, whether or not they are experiencing symptoms.
Read more


ADA Answers Coronavirus FAQs

March 12, 2020
The ADA is constantly updating this webpage with credible information that will protect both patients and dental healthcare personnel. Members are encouraged to email any questions relating to COVID-19 to dentalpractice@ada.org. This email address is closely monitored.
Read more


World Health Organization Declares Pandemic

March 11, 2020
WHO Director-General’s opening remarks at the media briefing on COVID-19: “WHO has been assessing this outbreak around the clock and we are deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity, and by the alarming levels of inaction. We have therefore made the assessment that COVID-19 can be characterized as a pandemic.

Pandemic is not a word to use lightly or carelessly. It is a word that, if misused, can cause unreasonable fear, or unjustified acceptance that the fight is over, leading to unnecessary suffering and death. Describing the situation as a pandemic does not change WHO’s assessment of the threat posed by this virus. It doesn’t change what WHO is doing, and it doesn’t change what countries should do.

We have never before seen a pandemic sparked by a coronavirus. This is the first pandemic caused by a coronavirus. And we have never before seen a pandemic that can be controlled, at the same time.”
Read more


Gov. Polis Declares State of Emergency

March 10, 2020
Colorado Gov. Jared Polis declared a state of emergency on March 10 in response to recent cases of COVID-19 in the state.

The new strain of coronavirus began popping up in the United States in February. On March 5, the first case was announced in Colorado. As of Tuesday morning, Polis said three new cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the state, bringing the total number to 15.
Read more


CDA Implements CDC Guidelines

March 10, 2020
The CDA has implemented the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers and will continue to update its policy based on CDC recommendations.

The CDA is taking COVID-19 seriously and will follow the CDC’s protocols for appropriately managing sick employees, routine cleaning of the office, and employee business and personal travel. Additionally, the CDA has implemented its Business Continuity Plan, which outlines protocols for long-term work-from-home arrangements should the need arise.


ADA Releases Coronavirus Guidelines for Dentists

March 2, 2020
Originally published on ADANews

The American Dental Association has released an informational handout for dentists on the coronavirus disease, now named COVID-19.

The handout covers strategies for helping prevent the transmission of suspected respiratory disease in the dental health care setting and answers frequently asked questions related to the virus, based on guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Read more