As a registered dental practitioner, you have a legal obligation to comply with the Dental Board of Australia (the Board) requirements when it comes to infection prevention and control.
The DBA acknowledges that dental practitioners will seek guidance from their professional association for standards expected to be applied in practice. The ADA publishes the Guidelines for Infection and Prevention Control to assist dental practitioners in applying complex information from national standards, guidelines and handbooks into dental practice.
ADA recommends practices have the following documents in either hard copy or electronic form:
ADA’s Guidelines for Infection and prevention Control
This publication synthesises infection control information from National Guidance and Standards for practical application in a dental context.
An infection and prevention control manual
This manual outlines your infection control protocols and procedures so that all team members are aware of the requirements in your work setting. The ADA provides members with an Infection Control Manual Template (downloadable below in publications list) to assist in creating your own customised manual.
Dental Board of Australia Code (DBA) code and resources
The DBA code of Conduct, Infection Control Fact Sheet and Reflective Tool can be found at the Dental Board of Australia
The relevant Standard is selected based on the specifics of your practice and can be purchased here www.standards.org.au
The AS/NZS 4815: [Current Edition] Office-based health care facilities: Reprocessing of reusable medical and surgical instruments and equipment, and maintenance of the associated environment [Dental practitioners work under AS/NZS 4815 unless they work within an organisation that operates under AS/NZS 4187 as below].
The AS/NZS 4187: [Current Edition] Reprocessing of reusable medical devices in health service organisations.
Please note: These Standards apply across various health professions and are currently under review. New guidance will be published by the ADA when the amended Standard(s) become available.
The Communicable Diseases Network of Australian (CDNA)
The CDNA also produces guidelines to help public health units respond to disease outbreaks including but not limited to Covid-19.
You may also be required to comply with local state infection control requirements (for example, Queensland practices must also have an infection control management plan). Please reach out to your ADA branch to discuss your local requirements.
It is imperative that all staff understand the importance of the infection control procedures and why they must follow them exactly and consistently. The onus remains, however, on you as the registered dental practitioner to ensure that the infection control procedures are in place and are routinely followed.
To ask the ADA Infection Control Committee a question, search for frequently asked infection control questions or to ask your fellow ADA colleagues for advice, please jump on to Peer.
In order to ensure that your knowledge of infection control procedures is current, you’re encouraged to regularly undertake continuing professional development that specifically focuses on infection control. Each year dental practitioners must renew their registration and make a declaration that they are compliant with DBA requirements. Before doing so, you should ensure your infection control documentation and protocols are up to date.
The ADA will continue to provide peer reviewed information to help members protect the public from transmission of infections in a dental setting and to comply with legal and regulatory requirements.
The full suite of ADA infection control publications and links to other helpful resources can be found via the links provided below.
AS/NZS 4815 by Standards Australia
- An integral component of the Dental Board of Australia Guidelines for Infection Control, and hence, the ADA Guidelines for Infection Control, AS/NZS 4815:2006, which covers office-based health care facilities, applies to the vast majority of dental practices.
AS/NZS 4187 by Standards Australia
- An integral component of the Dental Board of Australia Guidelines for Infection Control, and hence, the ADA Guidelines for Infection Control, AS/NZS 4187:2004, applies to larger health organisations such as hospitals and public dental clinics.