Dental Info

Postexposure Prophylaxis (PEP) Hot-line:

Trained medical professionals are on call 7 days a week to discuss procedures and the need for PEP after a needle stick: (888) 448-4911 or click here.

OSHA Compliance Checklists and Info:

  • For the latest and greatest information on infection control in dentistry, check out (Organization for Safety and Asepsis Procedures). They also have a fantastic OSHA checklist (click here) and are a great organization to join for the latest updates in infection control.
  • Check this out!  Here’s a pretty complete checklist for OSHA and infection control: osha infection control checklist
  • From OSAP, the dental infection control gurus of the universe, here’s some fantastic guidance on becoming your office’s OSHA compliance queen (or king, as the case may be!): click here for guide
  • For a quick overview of what OSHA requires for dental offices and some recommended publications, check out this link:
  • For a list to help you get your Hazard Communication Plan in order: ( Hazard Communication Plan Checklist )
  • Here’s some information from the ADA about what to do in the event of an OSHA inspection: click here for info sheet
  • Here is a page the discusses what OSHA inspectors actually look for when inspecting an office as well as letters about specific situations: OSHA Enforcement Procedures

Stick Injuries and Sharps Info:

  • If someone in your office is stuck, DO NOT CALL ME!!! I often can’t be reached within 24 hours and you need to react quickly.  If you have any questions about stick injuries, call the Postexposure Prophylaxis (PEP) Hot-line. (doctors on call 7 days a week to discuss the need for PEP after a needle stick): (888) 448-4911 or click here for web site.
  • Here are the Steps after a Stick. Put this on the fridge in the lounge so you’ll have it handy if someone gets stuck: (click here for steps after a stick handout ).  Also here is more info explaining what needs to be done after a stick and why:  (click here for “stick injuries: management of exposures…” form)
  • Here’s an interesting article about stick injuries in hospital-based dentistry (where needlesticks may be more common than in regular dental practices because of the use of IV needles and different types of procedures); the article reiterates the importance of making all procedures as safe as possible. click here for article
  • Here is a great checklist from OSAP about what to do after a stick: click here
  • In the event of a stick injury , fill out this exposure report form and give it to the doctor when you and the source patient go for testing:  click here
  • Review of Rapid HIV Tests: click here Click link below for more info on rapid HIV antibody tests, how they work and how you can use them for your office.  More:
  • For free sample forms to evaluate safer sharps devices, go to:
  • Here is a completed evaluation of a safety syringe that you can print out, go over with your office staff, and if you agree with the findings, place it in your OSHA notebook: (click here for evaluation)
  • Here’s a study discussing dental safety needle effectivenessDental Safety Needle Effectiveness, results of a one year study.  click here to view / print this article.
  • Here is a sample OSHA needle safety plan to help you design a plan for your office, if you need one.  It’s in a “Word” format so you can change it however you want:  click here for OSHA needle safety plan

Disinfection/Sterilization and MSDS/SDS info:

  • Here are two articles from infection control experts about the effectiveness of wipes: OSHA Disinfectant Surface Wipes OSHA Wipes Effectiveness
  • Here’s some help when selecting approved disinfectants in dentistry:
  • Here’s a list of surface disinfectants from OSAP, the dental infection control experts: (OSAP Surface Disinfectant Reference Chart – click here)
    • Gordon Christensen, the dental products expert, evaluated several disinfectants for effectiveness: (click here)
    • For a list of EPA approved disinfectants, directly from the EPA, click here
  • Here’s an article about the nastiness found in water lines: (click here)
  • Here are instructions and information on how to clean and process your instruments, directly from OSAP, the infection control experts for dentistry:
  • Not sure about your waterlines?  Here are some test kits that are less than $5 /each and offer a simple test for bacterial growth (it is one of the tests that are mentioned in the ADA statement below):  Order the Sampler kit, item number MHPC10025, and it’s $141 for 25 test kits.
  • Here are some great articles about cost effective and easy methods of treating your waterlines, (please note that Listerine has also been found effective when used in the same manner as the Scope and peroxide mixtures described in these articles), view or print articles using Adobe Reader.  
  • The bib chain may be a source of cross contamination, so it’s important to disinfect or sterilize it.  Here’s some information you might find helpful: OSHA Bib Chain Contamination
  • For information on how to test your ultrasonic cleaner to make sure it’s functioning properly, check out this article from Dental Economics: (click here)
  • MSDS forms:  (We have to replace our existing MSDS forms with the newly formatted SDS forms.  Many times, dental supply companies have SDS forms on their website that you can print out, as needed.  If not, you can google the name of the chemical to find an SDS form.)
    • You are allowed to have an electronic SDS notebook.  Just make sure you have a printed copy of your chemical inventory and a backup of your notebook.  Also, make sure everyone in the office knows how to access the information, if necessary.

HIPAA Info, Forms and Checklists:

  • Go to the Handouts and Forms page for a complete list of available HIPAA forms.
  • HIPAA penalties can now run as high as $1.5 million per incident!  Make sure you have a HIPAA manual that is completely filled out and current.  Also, the program must be constantly maintained and updated, so have regular meetings and risk assessments to ensure that your program is current.
    • Here’s a form for an annual risk assessment that is actually a pretty good checklist for your HIPAA program (Laney’s HIPAA risk assessment ).  The HIPAA risk assessment will allow you to analyze your office for possible vulnerabilities and document the results, which should be done regularly to maintain your program. It should be used periodically, or whenever changes are made in your office, to evaluate your procedures related to patients’ private health information.  This form is based upon HIPAA’s security risk assessment tool which can be accessed at the following page: Click here for the link.
    • And here’s a short form for monthly risk assessments: (click here for HIPAA monthly risk assessment form).
    • To prevent large breaches, make sure your hard drive and all portable devices (smart phones, laptops, backup devices, etc.) are properly encrypted and secured.
  • Here’s a link a checklist for what to do if you have a cyber attack: (click here for the checklist)
  • Here’s what to do for a Ransomware attackHIPAA cyber attack checklist
  • Here’s a great summary guide for the Privacy and Security requirements(Click here for a Privacy and security guide )
  • Go to Laney’s Article page for articles summarizing the requirements for HIPAA
  • Here’s a website that allows you sign up for a free newsletter about what’s going on in the world of HIPAA.  It’s not just dental stuff, so don’t let it freak you out, but some of the information is very helpful: (Click here)
  • If a suspected breach occurs, this breach risk assessment can be used to help determine whether a reportable breach has occurred: HIPAA breach assessment
  • For specific questions and answers about HIPAA, go to the US Dept of Health & Human Services FAQ web link.  This is an AWESOME resource!  You can search for a term and they will show questions and answers related to that topic: (click here)
  • Here’s information about encryption and smart-phones and laptops:  ( click here )
  • For new OSHA and HIPAA manuals, call the ADA catalog people at (800) 947-4746 (make sure you provide your ADA number; the prices listed are much higher for non-members.)  For OSHA, you want the “Regulatory Compliance Manual”, which includes the update service and a CD ROM that allows you to customize forms (item #S696B, member price $275). The HIPAA compliance kit has the privacy and security information in one manual, plus a 3 year update service, and the customizable CD ROM,plus a basic HIPAA training DVD which can be used for new employees and for review purposes.  The item # is J598 and the price for members is $300. They also have a package that includes the OSHA and HIPAA manuals and all the stuff listed above for $575 (Item # K017… and yes, there is apparently no discount for buying them together).
  • Click here for a new website designed to help offices with HIPAA compliance.  It’s got some really great information and explanations, plus it’s adding state information, as well, so it should be a really great resource!
  • For general information about HIPAA in dentistry go to the following websites:
  • Here’s free HIPAA Privacy training from the HIPAA folks at the Dept. of Health and Human Services: (click here)
  • Here’s information about how to perform and document a risk assessment in your office (they need to be done regularly to ensure compliance with the Security Rule): Risk Assessment Document – click here
  • Here’s a general checklist for HIPAA privacyHIPAA readiness checklist and HIPAA checklist for HIPAA privacy
  • For a quick reference sheet directly from the HIPAA folks, check this out: HIPAA Fast Facts for Covered Entities
  • If you take pictures, have a film crew, take videos in your office, make sure all patients who may be visible have signed an authorization.  Here’s why it’s a good idea:  ( Click here )
  • Here’s a sample photo/video/xray authorization you can use as a starting place for your office: HIPAA authorization photo

HIPAA Security Standard Information:

  • Why encryption is necessary.  One of the biggest problems we have is securing our computer’s information from a potential breach.  Dealing with a breach has huge implications for a dental practice, so encryption is a great preventative measure.  If someone steals your computers and more than 500 patients are involved, you have to notify the patients AND the local media!  If the information is encrypted, the information is not considered usable and no breach has occurred.  Here’s information from the HIPAA folks about what’s required to comply with encryption.  This explains why encryption is the only security precaution that will stop a breach in the event that your computer, device, or a laptop or unencrypted phone (with access to your patients’ information) is lost or stolen. click here
  • Here is a short summary from HHS (the HIPAA folks):  click here
  • Here is some other info for more specifics about what’s required (the actual encryption requirements can be obtained from this page so you can give it to your computer guy):  click here
  • Here is a risk analysis guide, directly from HIPAA: ( Click here )
  • Also, here is the Security FAQ section, directly from HIPAA: click here
  • Here is a summary of the security requirements from HHS:  click here
  • Here’s the actual Security Standard: click here
  • And here’s a general page about security from the HIPAA folks:  click here
  • Here’s 5 great hints on keeping your computer system secure:  click here
  • Security Breach: A new section of the HIPAA rules were put into effect as of September 2009. In the event of a security breach of your computer system, you are supposed to follow certain procedures to ensure that patients are notified that their information may have been compromised. For information on breaches according to the 2013 HIPAA Rules, check out this article: click here 
    • In the event of a breach of unsecured personal health information, we are supposed to report it to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). If the breach involves more than 500 individuals in a single geographic area, we are supposed to notify our patients, the local media, and HHS as soon as possible (absolutely within 60 days of the breach); if it’s less than 500 individuals, we are to notify the patient(s) involved, then log it and notify HHS on an annual basis, (within 60 days of the end of the calendar year in which the breach occurred). Here is the site to fill out the HHS notification:
    • If there is a possible breach, it is assumed that a breach has occurred unless you analyze the situation and determine that the patients’ information was not compromised. If a reasonable person would determine that the information was compromised and a breach occurred, you have to follow the notification requirements; if there is no breach, file this completed form in your HIPAA notebook: (click here for “HIPAA breach assessment”).
    • Avoiding a breach: If your patients’ information is compromised (your computers are stolen, you lose a backup drive, someone hacks into your system) you have to report this breach unless your information is properly secured and encrypted.   Click here for information about the importance of securing your information and the importance of encrypting your hard drive:  (HIPPA Encryption Guidence)

General Risk Management and Office Safety Info:

Dental X-rays and Radiation Safety

Disease, Health and Infection Control Info:

General Info Related to Dentistry (or people in dentistry):

Specific Government References for Dentistry:

OSHA’s Safety and Health Topics for Dentistry page:  click here

CDC’s Infection Control in Dental Settings page: click here

PEP Hotline (888) 448-4911. Click here for the website.

NIOSH Workplace Safety in Dentistry website: click here

Other Dental Information Links:

  • American Dental
  • Center for Disease Control (CDC):
  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)  (US Dept. of Health and Human Services)
  • For a great web site with information about the link between systemic disease and oral health, check out  (which stands for zero tolerance for bleeding gums).  There’s a section for the public and one for professionals, and it’s a great educational tool for patients who just don’t get the fact that oral health can determine the state of your entire health.
  • For information about latex allergies in dentistry, click here
  • Morbidity and Mortality Weekly (CDC publication)
  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):
  • For info on Hepatitis, call the Hepatitis Hot-line:  (888) 443-7232 or

Some Fun Stuff…

Okay, so none of this has anything to do with infection control or regulatory compliance,

but my motto is:

If you’re going to be doing OSHA and HIPAA, you may as well be drinkin’!!

One quick reminder from your favorite safety girl…

Lots of alcohol here, so DO NOT do dentistry, drive, operative heavy machinery or accompany strange people to strange places while using these recipes…



For the very best recipe in the world for sangria, Sangria Cha Cha Cha (2)

murray camo
Maybe I should have stopped at 4…

(Okay, so it’s not really infection control related, but come on, how fun is sangria!)

And how about MARK’S 4-3-2 MARGARITAS?

marks margaritas


Click at your own risk!!