June / July 2020 Edition
by Board Chair Ron Bolden, Cigna
In my role as your board chair, I have a front row seat to the work of our association and how it advances our industry. I can say without a doubt; there has been no summer slowdown at NADP! To illustrate my point, allow me to share some key highlights from the past month.
In June, NADP conducted Advocacy in Action (AIA) and held a delegate call plus laid the groundwork for a successful CONVERGE and review of the upcoming 2020 Surgeon General’s Report.
To represent the dental benefits industry, 40 NADP members participated in 60 virtual meetings with members of Congress representing 23 different states. During AIA, conversations focused on the industry’s response to the coronavirus and racial disparities in oral health. Both topics were well received by legislative staff who expressed their appreciation for the industry’s involvement and discussion of these issues. In addition, NADP members presented industry asks focused on increasing access to dental coverage. (See related article in this newsletter).
In a post meeting wrap-up, AIA attendees shared updates from their experiences, including comparisons of the virtual and live events held in the past. Most agreed the virtual format provided them with more time to present our issues on each visit. They also noted how preparing an agenda in advance of the calls was beneficial as it prevented talking over other people and allowed each topic to be covered. While everyone agreed in-person meetings are best, they all agreed the virtual event was successful and definitely worth repeating.
Thanks to all who participated in AIA, our most powerful resource in our advocacy program.
On June 10, NADP Board members held a conference call with member plan delegates to discuss the highlights of the meeting with the American Dental Association (ADA) Council on Dental Benefits and COVID-19. Board members shared brief updates about different aspects of the ADA meeting. All noted the collaborative attitude that prevailed at the meeting and observed how the pandemic is a common challenge for providers and dental plans. The board also provided an overview regarding the discussion on personal protective equipment (PPE). Member delegates also asked follow-up questions on these topics. Afterwards, NADP distributed a recording of the call to delegates. In conclusion, the call provided an important opportunity for dialogue on the current issues impacting our industry.
CONVERGE, A Virtual Conference
Last month, NADP presented a video message announcing CONVERGE 2020 will be held in a virtual format this year. The new format features more hours of professional development. Check out the initial list of educational topics and expanded schedule on NADPCONVERGE.org. This is only the beginning. CONVERGE 2020, a virtual event, will have additional sessions featuring live presentation and recorded sessions with live Q&A sessions. Recordings of all sessions will remain on the website until the end of the year – giving you the opportunity to hear every single session and even listen to them more than once! Registration is now open. I encourage you to take advantage of this premier professional development event.
Preparing for 2020 Surgeon General’s Report
NADP is preparing for publication of the 2020 Surgeon General’s Report, which we anticipate will be in advance of the election. Both the Communications WorkGroup and Commission on Advocacy Policy recruited volunteers to serve on a task force to review sections of the report. The task force has been formed and volunteers are indicating which sections of the report they will review. Task force members will respond quickly in their evaluation of the report and provide direction regarding reaction to and use of the report.
The above list contains only highlights of the work NADP is doing to advance our industry. The key ingredient to all our activities is the expertise and involvements of our members and volunteers. Thank you for being a member of NADP! Should you have any questions or concerns about the direction of the association, please contact me.