The Most Effective Way to Influence Dental Policy

 

What is ADPAC?

ADPAC is an acronym for the American Dental Political Action Committee. It is essentially the legislative arm of the ADA. In other words, this committee makes sure that dentists all across the beautiful U.S. of A have some friends in Washington D.C. looking out for the interests of dentists and ultimately the interest of the patients. For the sports fans out there, consider a pitcher that is walking batters left and right. The coach has to make a call, and get a guy in there who can perform. In this incredibly well thought out metaphor, ADPAC is the coach and the pitchers are legislators. Dentists want legislators that can perform on their behalf.

 

How does this work?

How does ADPAC make friends you may ask? Well, quite simply they elect congressional candidates who understand the dentistry is important to overall health. They may then supply funds to their campaign, or opportunities that will increase the likelihood of getting them into office. ADPAC obtains these funds from donations. These donations come from dentists, and (clearing of the throat sound) dental students. From the previous baseball metaphor this would make you, the donor, the owner of the team.

 

Why should you donate?

Typically, when one graduates from a dental institution they may find themselves practicing dentistry. The legislative process is slow; meaning that decisions made on The Hill today may affect you in 20 years. In fact, one could argue that they are affecting you today (Oh, hello student debt!). Therefore, it is critical that you begin the good fight today. If you are anything like me, dentistry has seeped into every aspect of your life. Not a single day goes by that I don’t do something related to school. I work too hard to let the political environment change the profession that I sweat, stress, and bleed for (I cut myself with the Hollenback once). I am not waiting to be a part of dentistry; I am a part of dentistry. 

With a mere $5 you are considered a member of ADPAC. If you are feeling like you want to make more of an impact $50 will get Capital Club membership. You will receive a lapel pin indicating your level of donation, which I would highly recommend wearing to dental conferences (Oh, Hello Star of the South). You might be surprised at who ends up shaking your hand.

This method of advocacy is the most effective way to protect dentist interest. Why? Because getting a person in office who cares about our issues will increase the probability of bettering dental care not just today, not just tomorrow, but for the ENTIRETY OF THEIR TERM IN OFFICE!!! Talk about return on investment.

If you are interested in learning more please attend the annual HoustonASDA ADPAC Drive or contribute directly athttp://www.ada.org/en/advocacy/adpac.

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