January 09, 2020
By Kimber Solana
The ADA’s Continuing Education Recognition Program, or ADA CERP, announced in December that it is collaborating with Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education, in an effort to offer dentists more opportunities to participate in interprofessional education.
“The Commission for Continuing Education Provider Recognition realizes that the health care in the future will be team based,” said Dr. Monica Cipes, vice chair of the CCEPR, which oversee the ADA’s Continuing Education Recognition Program. “This collaboration will help position dentists to be an integral and indispensable part of that team.”
The collaboration allows organizations approved through Joint Accreditation to also obtain ADA CERP recognition so they may include dentists in their continuing education programs without needing to attain a separate accreditation from ADA CERP.
“The science and practice of medicine and dentistry is advancing at such a pace that it is difficult for dentists to continue to stay up-to-date within their own area of expertise, let alone with advances in medicine and all other allied health professions,” said Dr. Cipes.
The collaboration with Joint Accreditation can benefit ADA members, Dr. Cipes added, by “enabling them to access the most recent scientific and clinical information to the benefit of their patients and the public at large.”
Joint Accreditation is a collaboration of accreditors of continuing education in the health care professions, including dentistry, medicine, nursing, optometry, physician assistants, pharmacy, psychology and social work. It is designed to accredit CE providers that develop education for interprofessional healthcare teams.
“The dental professionals are specialists of a most important gateway of the body for oral systemic health and disease,” said Dr. Susan Reed, CCEPR chair. “Dental professionals bring their specialized knowledge to the concept of interprofessional education for exchange and collaboration for improving a patient’s overall health.”
Dr. Reed added that the collaboration also benefits ADA members by:
• Providing access to interprofessional continuing education that formally includes dentistry.
• Supporting interprofessional collaborative practice through team-based learning.
• Continuing the development and practice of interdisciplinary education begun during pre- and post-doctoral dental training.
“We celebrate our collaboration with our colleague accreditor, ADA CERP, because it recognizes the importance of oral health and the vital contributions of dentists to improving team care,” said Graham McMahon, M.D., president and CEO of Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education, which is a co-founder of Joint Accreditation for Interprofessional Continuing Education.
Dentists who participate in interprofessional education are also able to obtain a better understanding of the complex relationship between oral health and the overall health and well-being of their patients, Dr. Cipes said.
“It has been said that the mouth is a window into the health of the body,” she said. For example, dental disease has been linked to diverse medical conditions such as cardiovascular disease, stroke, preterm delivery and low birth weight.
“Additionally, systemic diseases such as diabetes, blood dyscrasias, HIV and cancer may first manifest themselves in the oral cavity,” Dr. Cipes said. “For these reasons, communication with the rest of a patient’s health care team has become increasingly important.”
For more information on Joint Accreditation, visit jointaccreditation.org.