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RM Matters

This article series is shared online and in select dental publications. Each article explores a single developing topic in risk management.

Featured Articles

COVID-19 and Informed Consent: What You Need To Know

Many calls to TDIC’s Risk Management Advice Line concern informed consent and communicating any risks of contracting COVID-19 in a dental setting. Learn more about which informed consent forms are sufficient today and how a signed form can be your first line of defense when facing a professional liability claim.

Returning to Work: A Compassionate Approach To Staff Well-Being

The COVID-19 pandemic has instilled feelings of stress, anxiety and fear in many dental professionals. Learn how to address staff who may be returning to work with significant anxiety and unease over their own health and safety, financial worries or child care in the current environment.

Seeking Guidance and Finding Focus in Times of Distraction and Distress

The combination of clinical concerns, business uncertainties and economic pressures can lead to overwhelming feelings of anger, fear, disillusion and grief. Dentists are connected to a network of peers, as well as specialized experts, who can share empathetic, objective guidance in times of hardship.

RM Matters Archive
Employment General Liability Patient Care Property Record Keeping

Speak Up! Open Communication Strengthens Employer-Employee Bonds

The art of communication is the language of leadership. In the dental office, open communication between practice owners and staff ensures an efficient workplace, reduces employee turnover, improve job satisfaction and helps mitigate potential employment-related claims.

Working From Home? Considerations for Telecommuting

More and more dental employees are working from home, particularly those who perform scheduling, billing and other administrative. What are employers’ responsibilities when it comes to managing risks such as employee injuries and HIPAA considerations?

Reduce Risk, Increase Productivity With Cellphone Policies

The ubiquity of cellphone use puts employers in a difficult spot. See how phone use can bring up questions of productivity, professionalism and privacy in a dental office setting, and how to develop and enforce appropriate policies.

Workers’ Compensation: Your Obligations as an Employer

As employers, dentists must follow workers’ compensation laws and state-specific obligations like compliance postings and injury-reporting requirements. Get answers to common questions about workplace injuries and illnesses, leaves of absence, accommodations and termination.

Keep Holidays Happy with Guidelines for Office Parties

Participation, employee dynamics and labor laws all come into play when planning an office party. It’s important that practice owners establish clear guidelines when organizing any office event.

Safe and Sober: Managing Employees Who Are Under the Influence

From a detailed drug-free workplace policy to dealing with reasonable suspicion of intoxication, there are essential steps that can be taken to protect a safe and productive practice.

Hiring Done Right: License Verification and Background Checks

For practice owners, hiring competent, qualified and properly licensed staff can help lower the risk of negligent hiring and employment-related claims.

Winning Strategies for a Team Approach to Risk Management

Encouraging staff to watch for potential problems in a dental practice means difficulties are identified and diffused more efficiently.

Dentists and the Virtual Dental Home: What You Should Know

The Virtual Dental Home model demands the use of specific protocols and is subject to the same regulations as traditional practice models.

When Casual Behavior Crosses the Professional Line

A relaxed, family-like environment is a good thing, but it is important to remember that dentists set the standard for appropriate conduct.

Accounting Controls Can Prevent Dishonest Behavior

Internal theft is an unfortunate reality, but dentists can avoid becoming a victim by implementing a few simple preventative measures.

Report Employee Injuries Immediately to Avoid Complications

When faced with a Worker’s Compensation claim, dentists should follow a few basic guidelines to help the process go smoothly.

Straight-Ahead Facts on Wage and Hour Rules

Keeping current on laws concerning minimum wage, overtime, meals, breaks and paid sick leave is essential for any practice owner.

Minimizing Vicarious Liability for Employee Actions

A methodical hiring process and clearly defined roles and expectations can help protect dentists from negligent behavior from staff.

Dating a patient? Refer First

You can’t always avoid Cupid’s arrow, but you can avoid potential liability by referring the patient to another practice first.

Addressing Interoffice Dating

Clearly defined policies on office romance can help ward off claims of sexual harassment and favoritism, while keeping morale high.

Address Harassment Complaints Immediately to Avoid Liability

Dentists have a legal obligation to maintain a safe workplace, and can be held liable if a harassment situation is not addressed.

FMLA and Other Triggers for Leaves of Absence

As business owners, dentists are required to understand the ins and outs of laws that provide leave of absence rights to workers.

What's the Deal with EPL?

Employment Practices Liability insurance protects dentists from employment-related claims, including discrimination and harassment.

OMG! Txting @ work is not gr8

Mobile devices have revolutionized the way we communicate, but their use has many liability implications for dental practices.

Follow a Post-Exposure Plan After Needlestick Injury

As the No. 1 Worker’s Compensation Claim in dentistry, needlestick injuries require a thorough and immediate plan to document exposure.

Employee Needlestick Injuries are Prevalent and Preventable

There is often a pattern of behavior related to needlestick injuries, so implementing precautions and an exposure control plan is crucial.

Current issue
Liability Lifeline
2020 Volume 2, Wildfire Issue

Prepare your practice for wildfire season with guidance from TDIC’s Risk Management experts. Plan ahead with a helpful checklist and learn how to take inventory to safeguard your practice, navigate disrupted practice operations and take emergency measures to protect property.


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