As the connection between oral and systemic health strengthens, it is important for dental students to understand how vaccinations play a critical role in stopping communicable diseases. With the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic, discussions about administering and receiving vaccines has come to the forefront of many within organized dentistry and beyond.  Dental students and dentists will play a vital role in explaining evidence-based medicine to patients and advocates of the anti-vaccinations movement.

Courtney Hollingsworth, Howard '22 
along with other volunteers helped
to vaccinate over 500 people on the
first day of the vaccination clinic.

Ashley Wettstain, Kentucky ’22
administers the COVID-19
vaccine at the Kentucky Dental
Association Advocacy Days.

ASDA's Policies

ASDA’s H-11 policy supports the ADA Policy on Vaccine Administration. The policy also encourages dental schools to incorporate vaccine administration into their curricula and to administer vaccinations in clinical settings, when appropriate. 

ASDA’s I-2 policy supports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) current recommendation that dental students be vaccinated, given their risk for contracting serious, and sometimes deadly, diseases. ASDA also encourages dental schools to provide and help subsidize vaccine-preventable diseases screening and vaccine administration.

ASDA's I-3 policy supports compliance with the current CDC guidelines for vaccines, recommends that dental schools urge patients to follow CDC guidelines for vaccines, and encourages dental schools to provide patient education on vaccines as a scientifically-proven safe and effective measure of preventing communicable diseases. 

What ASDA Has Done:

During ASDA’s 2020 House of Delegates meeting, the House passed a resolution encouraging compliance with the CDC guidelines on vaccines and urging dental schools to provide patient education on vaccines.

On Dec. 16, 2020, ASDA and 24 other dental and healthcare organizations sent a letter to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) requesting clarification to include dental, autopsy, and laboratory personal for priority access to a COVID-19 vaccine.

At ASDA’s 2021 House of Delegates meeting, the House passed two resolutions regarding vaccinations. H-11 discusses dentists and dental students administering vaccines, and I-2 discusses dental students receiving vaccines. 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, ASDA launched a Feature Friday series on social media highlighting dental students administering the COVID-19 vaccine. 

ASDA developed evidence-based talking points to use when discussing vaccinations.

Federal Actions

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services amended an emergency declaration under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act) to authorize additional providers, including dentists and dental students, to vaccinate patients for COVID-19 nationwide. 

This federal declaration allows certain professionals throughout the country to vaccinate the public against COVID-19, regardless of state laws that prevents them from doing so.

What ASDA Members are Saying


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