Tuesday, January 17, 2017

DentalEZ® Donates Massive Amount of Equipment, Supplies to Project Chimps Organization

This is a very neat story about helping animals that truly require our help.  As a profession, we frequently have the opportunity to help people, but there are frequently limits to what we can do to help animals.  Considering that we share 98% of our DNA with chimpanzees it’s nice to see DentalEZ® doing a project like this to benefit them.  Read on for the details of how DentalEZ® is helping the Project Chimps Organization.



Contribution Will Provide Complete Dental Care Facility for 

the Organization’s New Location


Malvern, PA (January 10, 2017) – For its latest philanthropic endeavor, DentalEZ®, a supplier of integrated products and services for dental health professionals worldwide, recently donated a full shipment of dental supplies and equipment to Project Chimps, a rescue organization dedicated to the lifetime sanctuary care of hundreds of captive chimpanzees. 


Specifically, the Company donated various dental products, and operatory and utility room equipment to Project Chimps’ new northern Georgia sanctuary including NevinLabs steel cabinets, DentalEZ® delivery units and operatory lights, StarDental® handpieces, and RAMVAC vacuums and compressors. Because of the Company’s generous donation, the new dental facility will now have all components needed for complete and optimal dental care of the rescued animals. 


Peter Volk, Territory Sales Manager for DentalEZ is heading the mission along with Southern Region Manager, Chuck Seeger, and Jason Hodkowski, Senior Institutional Sales Manager. The team is currently working with the company to create the dental facility. “It is interesting because as dental professionals our focus is almost always on our human patients,” remarked Volk. “What most people don’t think about is that all of the animals that they only see on Animal Planet or at the zoo need dental care. Once in a captive environment these animals need to receive all of the preventive care that we humans are accustomed to.”


A recent transfer carried out by Project Chimps prompted the charitable donation by DentalEZ, as well as widespread national attention. Nine chimpanzees once used as research animals at the New Iberia Research Center in Louisiana were just relocated to the new Project Chimps refuge, hundreds of miles from their former home in a lab where they were used as subjects in biomedical testing. 


Workers with the non-profit organization transported all nine animals and now Project Chimps sanctuary, located in Morganton, Georgia, is their new home, a sprawling preserve where over 200 chimps will eventually roam free. The 236-acre sanctuary is located along a temperate rainforest, with rolling hills and a lush, green landscape. In addition to office buildings, a full veterinary clinic, and an upscale kitchen designed by celebrity chef Rachael Ray, there are currently four "villas" that can house 10-15 chimps each, and one larger group building that can house two groups of 10-15 chimps. 


“It’s a very rewarding feeling to know that we are providing the medical and dental equipment to chimps that, up to this point, have spent most if not all of their lives in a research laboratory,” continued Volk. “As a DentalEZ representative, it is important that we give back not only to the people in our community, but also to those that do not have a voice. It is our calling as dental professionals to make sure that everyone, both human and animal, are treated with the utmost care and respect.”


In 2015, all chimpanzees were designated an endangered species, marking the end of privately funded research on chimpanzees in the US. Chimps are considered the smartest primate and the closest relatives to humans, which is why the New Iberia Research Center in Louisiana has used 220 of them for medical testing. 


The opening of the new Project Chimps sanctuary follows a steady shift away from controversial biomedical research on chimpanzees across the country. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) began significantly phasing out its funding of federal research on chimps in 2013, and announced the retirement of its 50 remaining chimpanzees in November 2015.


NIH also ended its research support for chimps but did not own approximately 360 remaining around the US. Now the private institutions that own them, like the New Iberia Research Center, are following suit. However, due to limited space at existing sanctuaries such as Chimp Haven in Louisiana and Save the Chimps in Florida, the creation of new refuges like Project Chimps is crucial. 


For more information about Project Chimps, please visit www.projectchimps.org. 


For more information about the DentalEZ company and its complete offerings of dental product and equipment solutions, please visit www.dentalez.com.


About Project Chimps


Project Chimps was founded in late 2014 by a “super group” of chimpanzee, nonprofit, philanthropic, and legal experts to solve the critical question of what would happen to the hundreds of chimps still left in private biomedical research. Primatologists and professionals from all over the country left their current roles and signed on to work for Project Chimps, a nonprofit organization that is making unprecedented advances for captive chimpanzees. Through relationship-building, collaboration, and tenacity, Project Chimps was able to come to an agreement with the University of Louisiana’s New Iberia Research Center. They agreed to let Project Chimps have all of their remaining chimpanzees and provide them with lifetime sanctuary care. This decision is unprecedented and shows what positive collaboration can do for the betterment of others, in this case: chimpanzees. For more information, please visit www.projectchimps.org. 

Monday, January 16, 2017

Despite Rumors to the Contrary, There is NO Shortage of N2O for Medical Use

Nitrous Oxide.jpg
 In August of 2016, an explosion happened at a plant owned by Airgas in Cantonment, Florida.  That plant happened to be a major producer of nitrous oxide.  Almost from the moment the explosion happened (which shut down the plant) there were rumors of a nitrous oxide shortage in the U.S.

During the recent holiday season there were announcements that Rediwhip, the whipped cream in the aerosol can) would be in short supply because the product uses nitrous oxide as the propellant.  Due to the potential shortage, cans flew off the shelves (not literally).

When our office called for a tank of it to be delivered in early November, we were told this might be the last tank we would receive for a month or two due to the shortage.  We have the office completely plumbed for medical gasses, but we instituted a policy of not even turning the valve on the nitrous to the "on" position.  We were conserving as much as possible to ensure we would have an adequate supply for our patients.

Now comes word from the American Dental Association and the FDA that all is well with the supply.  One of the things I was impressed with is the FDA working to make sure that the healthcare industry is being given priority to existing supplies. 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Norway is Shutting Down its FM Radio Network - The First Country to do So



At the beginning of next week, Norway will begin to shut down the FM (Frequency Modulation) radio network.  The country will transition to an all digital satellite network over the same time that FM is being shelved.

There were a couple of reasons for this.

  1. Geography:  Norway is a country of mountains and fiords.  Getting standard radio waves into incredibly high and incredibly low places can be done, but it is expensive.  Digital broadcasting or DAB as it is called, will be much more cost efficient.
  2. Cost:  Government estimates show a savings of over $23.5 million per year which radio companies can use to create new and better programs to broadcast.  Also the FM network is aging and would require a significant capital investment to keep it going .

However it’s not all flowers and candy.  Norway is a country of 5 million people and about 2 million cars there don’t have a way to receive digital signals.  However adapters can be purchased and as older vehicles are retired they will be replaced with new ones that can receive digital signals.

Personally I find this interesting news.  Change is one of the things we are guaranteed.  I’ve had satellite radio for a few years now and would never go back.  However, could FM be shut down in the US?  Norway’s effort will be followed with interest, I’m sure.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Top 10 Tech Trends that will Define 2017

Now that the New Year is upon us, it’s time to do some planning.  Actually I would hope that you did this planning in December, but hey, it’s never to late to get things in order.
Along those lines my first article in DPR this year is on the Top 10 tech trends that will define 2017”.  Here is a quick sample of the article:

As 2016 draws to a close, we’re looking back at the year, but we’re also looking forward at what’s to come. What are the top 10 trends that will define 2017? Here’s what I see making a big impact next year:

1. Digital impression CAD/CAM:

CEREC was invented in the late 1980s (how they ever managed to pull that off with the technology at the time still amazes me). The product category made baby steps of progress until the late 1990s and early 2000s when the combination of an incredible drop in computer prices and a tremendous growth of processing power coupled to drive innovation. Soon the E4D unit came along, followed by several companies with digital impression systems. Today, more than 20 percent of offices are using some type of digital acquisition technology and the number continues to grow. This is no longer a “should I buy,” but is now a “when I buy” tech.  

The complete article is available to read on the DPR website and includes a couple of video chats I did regarding some of the topics mentioned in the article.  

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Dentists Top the List of Health Practitioners Americans Want to See More Of

Provider survey.jpeg
Here is some interesting information that was discovered by Delta Dental Plans Association.  It seems that Americans would like to see a dentist more often than they currently do.
The study is full of some really interesting stats and, being a bit of a “stat hound”, I was fascinated by some of the information presented.  Here are 3 really interesting data points:
  • 79% of American adults agree there is a connection between oral health and overall health
  • Adults who are extremely satisfied with their oral health rate there overall wee-being as very good (48%), compared to those who report they are not satisfied (28%)
  • 63%feel that good oral health helps them feel confident on a daily bases, more so than having clear skin (56%) or being in shape (50%)

For more information go to PR Newswire.  

Monday, January 9, 2017

Kerr™ Partners with DRNA™ to Drive Greater Awareness of New EPA Regulations

EPA Logo.jpg

A couple of weeks ago I posted about how the EPA would soon be requiring Amalgam separators.  Now comes info from Kerr and DRNA (the company I use) about helping dentists to have the necessary equipment to be in compliance.  Read on for the details.  

Broader commitment to environmental responsibility underscored by dual focus on equipment and education for the dental community.


January 2, 2017 – Understanding that any successful transition requires the right equipment and the necessary education, Kerr is partnering with Dental Recycling of North America, Inc. (DRNA) to support dental practices through information, training, documentation and equipment.

RecyleAmalgamWaste.com — a new site hosted by DRNA — builds on the organization’s successful relationship with Kerr to provide resources exclusively for Kerr customers. These include:

  • A complete checklist of key points regarding compliance with the new EPA regulations, including FAQ’s
  • A list of future dates of DRNA webinars on the new EPA regulations 
  • An update on disposal and recycling policies of Evac-u-Traps™ and chairside Pinnacle™ traps, as well as the best solutions for compliance 
  • Offices can also sign up for the Free Environmental Compliance report which is sent out via email on a monthly basis


DRNA will also make available — at no cost — an eight-hour continuing education course that walks dental offices through compliance requirements. Valued at $299, “Public Health, the Environment and Dentistry: From Policy to Clinical Practice,” offers a comprehensive understanding of the EPA regulation, set to be issued in June 2016. Created by Dr. Al Frost, a dentist, epidemiologist, public health specialist and Vice President for Clinical and Scientific Affairs for DRNA, the course guides clinicians through the changing EPA landscape.  It offers a thorough understanding of topics including:

  • The impact of environment on human health;
  • Environmental policy and the rationale for regulatory development;
  • Dentistry's role in environmental public health; and
  • How to develop and implement compliance policies.


For a limited time only, DRNA will be offering Kerr customer base a free recycling unit with the purchase of a year-long service agreement. The success of this effort also requires reporting, and to that end, DRNA has agreed to offer Kerr customers help with all of the documentation they are now required to provide to the government — a major benefit to busy dentists who care about compliance with the new guidelines.

“Kerr is highly committed to the environment and pleased to support DRNA’s mission to see that the environmental aspects of amalgam are addressed in the most satisfactory manner,” said Todd Norbe, President for Kerr Corporation, North America. “Given the upcoming EPA federal rule on amalgam recycling, we are keen to do our part to educate the dental profession on the best solutions in place to address this important environmental compliance issue.”

For more information, visit www.kerrdental.com or call 877-685-1484.



About Kerr 

For nearly 125 years, Kerr has been serving the comprehensive needs of the entire dental care community in pursuit of enhancing oral health.  Individual Kerr brands are encompassed within the Kerr Restoratives, Kerr Endodontics, Kerr Rotary, and Kerr TotalCare platforms. By providing best-in-class, patient-based solutions, we believe that in partnership with those we serve - “Together we’re more.”

Visit us at www.kerrdental.com or call 800-KERR123.


About DRNA, Inc. 

DRNA is the North American leader in dental waste management and recycling. Whether amalgam waste, x-ray chemistry, lead, bio-hazardous or pharmaceutical waste, DRNA provides essential and affordable solutions for every dental office. DRNA is the number one compliance partner providing equipment, recycling, long-term documentation and education. 

For more information on DRNA please visit www.drna.com.


Thursday, January 5, 2017

Make Any Device with an Input Jack Bluetooth Compatible

iStream Bluetooth.jpg
I love podcasts.  I have since they were invented all those years ago, but I’ve really gotten into them on the recommendation of my partner Dr. John Huebner.  He has eclectic tastes like mine and has recommended several podcasts that I wouldn’t have thought of before.
Of course, the joy of podcasts is they update on your phone automatically and you can play them anywhere your phone goes.  My personal preference is to listen on my office commute.  I happen to have a 2009 Tahoe that I dearly love, but the one thing it lacks is audio Bluetooth capability.  It has Bluetooth for phone calls, but I cannot play any type of audio in the vehicle over Bluetooth.
To have audio, it requires me to connect a cable from the headphone jack on my iPhone to the Audio input jack on the dashboard.  This setup works just fine, but it does require me to have a cable handy and to connect it before I can listen to anything.  A few months ago I had the Tahoe in the shop for a few days for some repairs and the dealership loaned me a 2017 Silverado.  There has been a significant amount of tech added to vehicles since my Tahoe rolled off the line and one of those features was Bluetooth audio.  I got really spoiled by stating the truck and having my iPhone automatically connect and begin playing.  It may seem like a little thing, but I loved not having to deal with the cord.
All of the above was pushing me to find a solution, but over the Christmas break, my audio cable began suffer an internal break of a wire which was causing me to have to “jiggle” the cord & get it in just the right position to provide sound.  Finally I had had enough.
My solution was the Aluratek ALS01F i-Stream Bluetooth Audio Receiver.  This nifty little device has a cord that plugs into the audio input jack on the dash of the Tahoe.  My phone connects to the receiver via Bluetooth and all the audio from the phone now becomes wireless.  It’s pretty small, being about the size of a box of matches, and has a lithium ion battery with a 12 hour life.  That means I can commute all week on a single charge.  It also comes with a USB charger cable which can power and/or charge the device simultaneously.  When I get in my vehicle I just turn on the device and it connects with my phone.  It’s a great solution to a common problem and it only costs $29.99
If you are curious on how it works and are a visual learner, here’s a diagram 
iStream Bluetooth Diagram.jpg
In my research for a solution, I also discovered that Aluratek has a variety of products which looks pretty impressive.  Check out the Aluratek website here.