Thursday, March 21, 2019

Earth Hour 30 March 2019

Earth Hour is just over a week away on Saturday 30 March at 8.30 pm. Get involved and you’ll be joining millions of Australians taking part in the largest global environmental movement.

Individuals, schools, community groups and businesses are encouraged to take part by switching off to #Connect2Earth at 8.30pm on Saturday 30 March 2019.

There are lots of ways to get your practice involved:

  • Switch off for Earth Hour and register your participation
  • Find out how you can reduce the carbon footprint of your business
  • Host an event for your employees in the week of Earth Hour
  • Share photos of what you are doing on Earth Hour on social media
  • Nominate other businesses to get involved through the #switchoffchallenge.

Register your participation in Earth Hour, and join hundreds of businesses that want to see stronger action on climate change by sending your practice logo to appear on the Earth Hour pledge wall.

More information about taking part:

Everyone who signs up goes into the draw for a 10-day trip from Perth to Broome.

Find out more and register:

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Australia's love affair with sugar rots smiles

Leading health bodies call for people to rethink sugary drink this World Oral Health Day.

New figures reveal almost half of Australian children aged 5-10 experience tooth decay in their baby teeth. The Rethink Sugary Drink alliance is urging Aussies to give their teeth a break from sugary drinks and make the switch to water in a bid to protect their oral health.

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare figures released today also reveal this trend continues into adulthood with Australians aged 15 and over having an average of nearly 13 decayed, missing or filled teeth.

Sugary drinks, such as soft drinks, sports drinks and energy drinks, are a major contributor of added sugar in Australian children’s diets and the leading cause of tooth decay.

A/Prof Matthew Hopcraft, ADAVB CEO, has seen the devastating impact sugary drinks has on children’s teeth and wants Australians to consider the consequences of drinking too many.

"I’ve seen firsthand the devastating impact tooth decay has on the health, nutrition, social and emotional wellbeing of these kids and their families. There are extreme cases where dentists are extracting all 20 baby teeth from kids as young as 3 – it’s not pretty.” A/Prof Hopcraft said.

“Some people may not realise every time they take a sip from a sugary drink they expose their teeth to an acid attack, dissolving the outer surface of our tooth enamel. This regular loss of enamel can lead to cavities and exposure of the inner layers of the tooth that may leave them feeling very sensitive and painful.

“Healthy teeth are an integral part of good oral health, enabling us to eat, speak and socialise without pain, discomfort or embarrassment. It’s disheartening to know 27% of Aussie kids feel uncomfortable about the appearance of their teeth. No kid should look back on their childhood and remember the distress and pain that came as a result of drinking too many sugary drinks.”

A/Prof Hopcraft said World Oral Health Day serves the perfect chance for Australians to rethink their choice of drink.

The ADA is a proud Rethink Sugary Drink partner.

View full media release:

World Oral Health Day 2019:

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

VOHA welcomes Grattan laser shining on dental gaps

An alliance of dental health professionals, providers and consumers has welcomed the Grattan Institute report ‘Filling the dental gap: A universal dental scheme for Australia’ as a significant contribution to addressing one of the most inequitable and under-funded areas of healthcare in the country.

‘Every federal and state-based politician needs to read this report, to both understand that many people are locked out of affordable and timely care, and to see a potential way forward to treating oral health in the same way we do for the rest of the body’, said Tony McBride, Spokesperson for the Victorian Oral Health Alliance (VOHA).

‘The Grattan Institute recommendations seek dental care funding in a similar way to general healthcare. By enhancing access to primary dental care for disadvantaged population groups making it an important feature of our healthcare system, we can improve public health, as well as individual social and employment prospects.’

VOHA is strongly supportive of Grattan’s analysis, which highlights that the current system:

  • treats health care for the mouth in a very different, and unequal, manner than health care for the rest of the body with no compelling medical or economic reason to do so
  • is funded predominantly out of patients’ pockets (in stark contrast to most other health care), which is a potential barrier for many people accessing care
  • includes public dental schemes, which are inadequately funded and inequitable across jurisdictions, with most states having waiting lists of well over a year for public dental care (Victoria’s average is 20 months), with the consequential worsening of people’s oral health
  • resulted in approximately 2 million people nationally who needed dental care in the past year either didn’t get or delayed getting it because of the cost, with low-income people being the most likely to miss out on care.
Find out more:

VOHA members

  • Australian Dental and Oral Health Therapists’ Association Victoria (ADOHTA Vic)
  • Australian Dental Association Victorian Branch (ADAVB)
  • Australian Dental Prosthetists Association (ADPA)
  • Brotherhood of St Laurence
  • cohealth
  • COTA Victoria
  • Health Issues Centre
  • IPC Health
  • North Richmond Community Health
  • Star Health
  • Victorian Alcohol & Drug Association (VAADA)
  • Victorian Healthcare Association

Monday, March 18, 2019

World Oral Health Day

It's World Oral Health Day on Wednesday 20 March. This year's theme is 'Act on Mouth Health'. Your mouth is a mirror to your body and reflects your general health and well-being.

Avoid risk factors, adopt good oral hygiene habits and have regular dental check-ups to help protect your mouth and body.

Encourage your patients to #SayAhh and act on mouth health for World Oral Health Day. Get your practice involved by rewarding your patients with a free oral health kit of sample items on the day, or preparing some fresh fruit and veggie snacks for the waiting room.

Download resources for your practice:

Promotional resources are available at

World Oral Health Day is celebrated globally every year on 20 March. It is organised by FDI World Dental Federation and is the largest global awareness campaign on oral health.

WOHD spreads messages about good oral hygiene practices to adults and children alike and demonstrates the importance of optimal oral health in maintaining general health and well-being.

Each year, WOHD focuses on a specific theme and reaches out to the public, oral health professionals, and policymakers, who all have a role to play in helping reduce the burden of oral disease.

Get started on your bursary application!

ADAVB BOQ Specialist $10,000 CPD Practice Bursary

The 2019 ADAVB and BOQ Specialist CPD Practice Bursary is available for ADAVB members in private practice. This practice bursary recognises and supports dental practices that are committed to quality learning through continuing professional development for every practitioner and professional staff member in the practice.

The bursary consists of a grant valued at $10,000 to be used for professional development and training purposes only, of which:

  • $2,000 is to be applied to any CPD courses and/or training programs offered by ADAVB and
  • $8,000 is to be applied to any CPD and/or training programs offered by other providers.
Get started on your applications and this could be you in 2019!

"It was an unquestionable surprise and privilege to be considered for the 2018 ADAVB BOQ Specialist CPD Practice Bursary. We take great pride in our continuing professional development for all roles at our practice, therefore this grant is very much appreciated and is greatly contributing to our staff training. The advantages of ongoing training and development not only benefit your staff, but the practice as a whole and this will be reflected in the experience your patients receive."
- Dr Sath Saranathan, 2018 Practice Bursary recipient

NEW! ADAVB BOQ Specialist $5000 Recent Graduate Bursary
Supporting the professional development of young dentists

The ADAVB BOQ Specialist Recent Graduate Bursary will support the career growth of a young dentist through financial support for continuing education courses. The bursary recognises a recent graduate who demonstrates a commitment to high quality ongoing professional development.

ADAVB members that registered in Australia for the first time between 2011-2019 are welcome to apply. The bursary consists of $5,000 to be spent on courses at ADAVB for professional development and must be spent between September 2019 and September 2021.

Applications for both bursaries close Monday 8 July 2019 5.00 pm and can be made online, via email or in hard copy. Eligibility criteria apply.

Find out more and apply:

Friday, March 15, 2019

WorkSafe is seeking applications for Clinical Panel Register

WorkSafe Victoria invites qualified medical and allied health professionals to apply for positions on their Clinical Panel Register. The Panel will provide advisory services relating to clinical and rehabilitation support and advice to WorkSafe claims staff, agents and healthcare providers. Timely and appropriate return to work and improved health outcomes for injured workers are the Panel’s key objective.
The Panel will provide advice on individual claims and contribute to the broader development of WorkSafe’s policies and initiatives to improve health service provision.
Panel members will be appointed under an initial contract term of two years beginning 1 July 2019 with an option to extend.
Those interested are welcome to attend optional briefing sessions:
Monday 18 March 2019, 7:30am or 5pm at Batman’s Hill on Collins, 623 Collins Street, Melbourne.
To register and submit any preliminary questions prior to the sessions, contact and confirm your preferred session.
The registration and recruitment process opened on Thursday 7 March 2019 and closes on Wednesday 3 April 2019, 5:00pm. To apply for a position on the Panel, visit

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Celebrating our leading ADAVB women - HSLP graduate, Dr Emily Pow

With so many leading ADAVB women why stop at International Women's Day with our celebration of ADAVB women? We spoke to Dr Emily Pow, graduate of the Health Sector Leadership Program, previous co-chair of the Recent Graduates and Students Committee and current CPD Committee representative.

What motivated you to study dentistry? Have you ever been constrained by perceptions about what women ‘can’t’ do?
My motivation to study dentistry stemmed from my own experience of how having braces had changed my confidence. I used to be a very shy girl and once the braces came off things started to change! I could see firsthand the difference it made in my life and wanted to make a difference in other people's lives too.

I was not really constrained by what women can’t do, in fact going to an all-girls high school gave me a real ‘can do’ attitude. Girls in my high school all motivated each other to achieve their very best so I was very fortunate to be part of a group of women with high aspirations.

Describe some of the inspiring women in your life that have made an impact on you.
My mum has been always been an inspiration. Being a migrant she has gone through many obstacles to be where she is now - a successful corporate woman. I have also been fortunate to have been surrounded by high-achieving female friends who are kicking goals in their own fields. They have inspired me to work hard and we support each other to keep growing.

What influenced you to join an ADAVB Committee? Have you been involved in other committees or ADAVB programs?
After being President of the Bendigo Oral Health and Dentistry Society as a dentistry student I was invited to join the ADAVB Recent Graduates and Students committee the following year. Since then my eyes were opened up to the array of committees the ADAVB has to help connect the profession. After graduating in 2015, I have joined the Sports & Social Committee as well as becoming a recent graduate representative for the CPD Committee. I was also a graduate of the Health Sector Leadership Program in 2016.

Tell us about where you see your leadership journey taking you.
I’m not sure but I’m excited to find out!

Describe some of the highlights of your role as Co-Chair of the RGS Committee. 
Having  a record number of attendees for the recent graduates and students annual cocktail event was certainly a highlight! It’s always a fantastic night that brings peers together, which is important in a profession that can be isolating at times.

What do you enjoy/are you looking forward to about your role on the CPD Committee?
I am enjoying learning how hard the CPD Committee works to bring the multitude of events to their members and I am looking forward to bringing a fresh recent graduate approach to the committee.

What do you say to women considering taking the step into leadership with the ADAVB?
Women at the ADAVB and in the profession have always been so encouraging of me and I am sure they would do the same for any other young female graduate! There are many opportunities in the ADAVB, you just have to dip your toe in to find out.

Further information:

Contact a councillor:
Contact a committee member:
Nominate for a committee role (ADAVB login required):
Nominate for the Health Sector Leadership Program:
Apply for the ADAVB BOQ Specialist $10,000 Practice Bursary or $5000 Recent Graduate CPD Bursary:
Find your ADAVB Regional Group:

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Celebrating leading ADAVB women - HSLP graduate, Dr Elice Chen

Our International Women's Day leading ADAVB women profiles continue this week. We spoke to Dr Elice Chen, graduate of the Health Sector Leadership Program and member of the Public Dentistry Committee.

What motivated you to study dentistry? Have you ever been constrained by perceptions about what women ‘can’t’ do?
I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted to do after school, but I always liked applied arts, science and education, and dentistry felt like it would tick these boxes. To be honest there was a moderate amount of prodding from my parents as well. The dentist we went to growing up was also a woman from Taiwan so becoming a dentist didn’t seem like an unattainable possibility.

Attending an all-girls school, we were taught that we could achieve whatever we wanted in any field. But we were asked to do it in a “lady-like manner”. Perhaps the constraint is less about what women can or can’t do, but that there are different expectations on how we should do it.

Describe some of the inspiring women in your life that have made an impact on you. 
My mum is an incredible woman – moving to a foreign country in her 30s, learning a new language, working side by side with dad and making ends meet with two little kids. It’s a common migrant story of sacrifice and resilience, but it is no less amazing for it.

Can I say also Lisa Simpson?! I know she’s not real but I watched A LOT of The Simpsons as a kid and I liked her unashamed nerdiness and courage in wanting to do the right thing. She was such an interesting mix of strengths and vulnerabilities.

What influenced you to join an ADAVB Committee? Have you been involved in other committees or ADAVB programs?
I have always been dismayed that the people who need the most dental care are often the people with the least access to it. Since graduating in 2008, I have continued to work in the public sector, with an emphasis on a preventive approach. I joined the ADAVB Public Dentistry Committee (PDC) in my fourth year out, curious to see how decisions are made and hoping to put in my two cents in advocating for patients and staff in the public sector.

Last year I was really happy to be selected for the ADAVB Health Sector Leadership Program, delivered by Leadership Victoria. I met a lot of other keen allied health professionals and it opened my eyes to a variety of self-management, team management and communication techniques.

Tell us about where you see your leadership journey taking you.
My leadership journey is really just at the beginning. I would really like to see public dentistry in Victoria taken seriously – we need to value the vulnerable in our community and we need to value all the staff that support the system. It would also be great to contribute to a broader preventive health approach by working with allied health professionals to target groups with common risk factors.

Describe some of the highlights of your role as Vice-Chair of the Public Dentistry Committee.
Throughout my time on the PDC, I have been amazed at the support we have received from the ADAVB through engaging Professionals Australia to negotiate the EBA for public dentists. There have been many ups and downs, but it has been very heartening to see colleagues rally for the public sector. The networking events have been great fun too!

What do you say to women considering taking the step into leadership with the ADAVB?
Definitely go for it! Don’t be daunted by the prospect. A thriving organisation needs diversity and you will be supported if you are interested.

Further information
Contact a councillor:
Contact a committee member:
Nominate for a committee role (ADAVB login required):
Nominate for the Health Sector Leadership Program:
Apply for the ADAVB BOQ Specialist $10,000 Practice Bursary or $5000 Recent Graduate CPD Bursary:
Find your ADAVB Regional Group: