An article written on February 14, 2013, titled “ADA selects national communications firm“, by Kelly Soderlund discusses how the American Dental Association (ADA) has recently hired Fleishman-Hillard as their public relations (PR) firm.
The article states
“Fleishman-Hillard will be charged with developing communications strategies and messages; proactively pitching major oral health stories to national media; and creating toolkits and other multimedia materials that dental societies can also use as issues management resources. The goal…is to build and enhance dentists’ reputation and the profession; position the dentist as a fully-trained doctor who leads the dental team; demonstrate dentistry’s leadership in breaking down barriers to oral health for all Americans; and ensure that the media portrays dentistry fairly and accurately.”
I am not quite sure what exactly to expect from this PR campaign. The article talks about portraying dentists fairly and accurately and also providing people with the knowledge that empowers them to be good stewards of their own oral health.
I believe the information necessary to be empowered to be a good steward of oral health is from examining the evidence and seeing the real issues.
In an article in 2011 I explored the issue of Are Dentists Ethical or Scam Artists? From examining some accounts of people looking for a dentist the problem arises that some dentists tend to overtreat and others tend to undertreat and a reasonable patient can not tell the difference in many cases.
In an article in 2012 I explore the issue of The Evidence Base for Third Molar (Wisdom Teeth) Decisions where a conclusion was made that the choice to remove an asymptomatic, disease-free third molars (wisdom teeth) lies with the patient until better evidence comes along.
In a 2011 article I explored the issue of How to Improve Your Chances to Win a Dental Malpractice Lawsuit and discussed how some dentists, oral surgeons, and their staff engage in aggressive tactics to prevent lawsuits. In this post Potential Alternatives to the Current Medico-Legal System in the United States I explored some alternatives to the current medico-legal system in the United States. In this post The War on Healthcare: Patients Who Hate Doctors I discussed how some physician groups in the U.S. such as the ADA are trying to limit the non-economic damage cap in the U.S. to $250,000 for pain and suffering which for particularly young patients in some instances is extremely unfair, unjust, and downright ridiculous.
I think raising awareness about the the importance of oral health to overall health is important but am unsure on exactly how hiring a PR firm will be useful in working towards solutions to other critical issues in dentistry.