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Sunday, February 10, 2008

Dental Concerns

Nate, I enjoyed reading your article today on the importance of widening access to dental care. It reminded me how Superstar basketball player Wilt Chamberlain passed on a few years ago –due to complications from a simple dental problem.



In a related subject, I thought you would be interested in the below e-mail correspondence to see what I’ve been pursuing, regarding improved dental practices.



Best regards,



Jim Banholzer



-----Original Message-----
From: Jim Banholzer [mailto:smavo@cox.net]
Sent:
Tuesday, January 29, 2008 10:58 AM
To: 'Maggi Machala'
Cc: 'yvansickle@phd5.idaho.gov'; 'Daniella Chace'
Subject: RE: Question of proper cleaning procedures



Maggi Machala,



Thank you for responding to my concern. I did not know that Idaho Public Health districts do not have any jurisdiction over dental offices, unless there is an outbreak of infectious disease that can be traced to a specific dental office.



This is a sticky point, because right now there is much evidence -antidotal and otherwise - that indeed there is an epidemic of mass proportions occurring, especially in Southern Idaho. I refer you to the website of Colm A. Kelleher, Ph.D. http://www.colmkelleher.com/



Proper cleaning methods used in dental practices are essential to stopping the spread of this insidious disease and other communicable diseases. After hearing three tales of unsanitary practices, I wonder if allowing the Idaho Dental Association to police them selves is enough. Is there any other oversight -perhaps provided by a federal level? Should I be contacting our Congressman to see what can be done - powerful cow-lobby notwithstanding?



I will contact the Idaho Dental Association, but meanwhile am left wondering if there should not be a more thorough investigation and / or spot-checks from an outside agency, from a preventive aspect of this public health emergency. And to remind dental practitioners how important proper cleanliness is, even on the most bustling harried workdays.



Thanks again for your response,



Jim Banholzer







-----Original Message-----
From: Maggi Machala [mailto:maggi-m@phd5.state.id.us]
Sent:
Monday, January 28, 2008 8:41 AM
To: smavo@cox.net
Subject: FW: Question of proper cleaning procedures



Mr. Banholzer,


I'm sorry; it appears my response to your inquiry was not forwarded on.


Please see below



Maggi Machala, MPH, RN


Community Health Director


South Central Public Health District


1020 Washington Street North


Twin Falls, Idaho 83301


208-737-5984 (phone)


maggi-m@phd5.state.id.us



-----Original Message-----


From: Maggi Machala


Sent: Monday, December 10, 2007 10:09 AM


To: Yvonne Van Sickle


Subject: RE: Question of proper cleaning procedures



Mr. Banholzer,


Thank you for your inquiry. The Public Health Districts in Idaho do not


have jurisdiction over dental offices. The only way we would become


involved is if there was an outbreak of infectious disease that could be


traced to a specific dental office. We have received no such reports in


our region. If you have concerns about dental practices in Blaine


County, I encourage you to contact The Idaho Dental Association.



Maggi Machala, MPH, RN


Community Health Director


South Central Public Health District


1020 Washington Street North


Twin Falls, Idaho 83301


208-737-5984 (phone)


maggi-m@phd5.state.id.us



-----Original Message-----


From: Yvonne Van Sickle


Sent: Monday, December 10, 2007 9:36 AM


To: Maggi Machala


Subject: FW: Question of proper cleaning procedures



fyi



-----Original Message-----


From: Jim Banholzer [mailto:smavo@cox.net]


Sent: Saturday, December 08, 2007 4:24 PM


To: Yvonne Van Sickle


Subject: RE: Question of proper cleaning procedures



Thank you!



-----Original Message-----


From: Yvonne Van Sickle [mailto:yvansickle@phd5.idaho.gov]


Sent: Wednesday, December 05, 2007 12:11 PM


To: smavo@cox.net


Subject: RE: Question of proper cleaning procedures



Mr. Banholzer,



Thank you for your concern for public health issues in regards to the


inspection of dental offices.



Your email has been forwarded to the director of our Community Health


Division, Maggi Machala mmachala@phd5.idaho.gov, who will be responding


to your concern.



Thank you for your patience.




Yvonne VanSickle


Program Information Coordinator


South Central Public Health District


phone: 208-737-5939


yvansickle@phd5.idaho.gov



**********************************************



From: smavo@cox.net


Subject: Question of proper cleaning procedures


Sent: 11/28/2007 at 07:32 PM from 68.105.208.186



Name: Jim Banholzer


Address: PO Box 10039


City: Ketchum


State: ID


Zip: 83340


Phone: 208-720-2196



Message: Hello, I am in dire need of a dentist in the Wood River Valley


area. However, I find myself hesitating due to hearing some horror tales


of proper cleaning methods not used at some local dentist operating


rooms, which if true, would naturally result in a high potential for


transference of communicable diseases in between patients.



I wondered if you at the Health Department could help belie my fear, by


providing me some assurance, of which dental practitioners have & have


not been proven to use proper cleaning methods. Further, I wonder if the


health department ever conducts spot-check inspections to ensure the


public that proper cleaning procedures are being utilized on regular


basis's by local dentist operating rooms. Or is it the health


department's policy to allow dentists to police themselves regarding


this crucial cleanliness crusade, until someone first complains?



Thank you for your concern,


Jim B.



----------------



5/12/2007



The information contained in this e-mail is confidential, privileged, or


otherwise protected from disclosure. It is intended only for the use of


the


authorized individuals. Any unauthorized disclosure, copying,


distribution


or taking of any action based on the contents of this material is


strictly


prohibited and may result in civil or criminal penalties.



If you have received this e-mail in error, please delete it immediately.




----------------



To learn more about South Central Public Health District, please visit


our


websites:



www.phd5.idaho.gov (public)


www.panflusouthidaho.org (pandemic influenza planning)


www.diseaseinfosouthidaho.org (communicable disease information)

1 comment:

Blowing Shit Up With Gas said...

Hypochondriac that I am, I really didn't need to read that Wilt Chamberlain story as I continue to recover from wisdom tooth surgery.

Best of luck finding a clean dental office!