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MDA Board Announces New Executive Director


Webb Brown current lo rezThe MDA Board of Directors announces its new executive director, Webb Brown, IOM. He will officially start at the central office on January 10, 2022. Brown is concluding his current position as the CEO of the Montana Regional Multiple Listing Service (MLS).


We are excited to welcome Webb to our organization,” said Dr. Ingrid McLellan, MDA President. “He brings a lot of experience to the position. His knowledge and expertise will help us grow our association and focus on oral health advocacy. We are looking forward to him joining our team!”
MDA is a return to association management for Brown, retiring as CEO of the Montana Chamber of Commerce in 2018 after twenty years. He also worked for the Billings and Lewistown chambers of commerce and the Sanders County Economic Development Corporation. Brown is originally from Trout Creek and still owns property there. He attended Carroll College, although his BA in Political Science is from the University of California at Riverside. His Institute for Organization Management (IOM) designation is from the US Chamber of Commerce Foundation. Brown is currently an MBA candidate at the University of Montana.
“I am thrilled to join the MDA team,” said Brown. “Current staff Jean Strainer and Pamela Maslanka are great assets for the organization, and the strong board, led by Dr. McLellan, will be a joy to work with. I plan to hit the road to visit all the local societies around the Treasure State and coordinate with the American Dental Association (ADA). We have big plans for the future, including preparation for our Centennial Celebration in 2023!” MDA was incorporated in 1923.
In his role, Brown will also be responsible for the Montana Oral Health Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charity providing grants to promote Montanans' oral health through the support of dental education and access to care. 

COVID-19 Rapid Testing Has Big Impact on Dental Practices

HELENA, December 7, 2020 

    In October, MDA worked with the State of Montana Department of Emergency Services to have dentists administer the COVID-19 rapid tests. Fourteen dental practices across Montana are currently offering COVID-19 rapid testing services to all dental practices in the state. Four more sites will be open by December 11, expanding the geography so more practices will have to drive fewer miles to get tested. The Montana Dental Association can continue to grow the number of sites to 30 as more dental practices become comfortable with the safety protocols and volunteer to be a test site.
    Each practice has a slightly different method of handling dental team members from other offices. Most have them set an appointment by phone, and they arrive at the allotted time and stay in their car with a mask on. The dentist that is administering the rapid test approaches the vehicle (with a mask, face-shield,gown and gloves) and provides the nasal swabs to be self-administered. The dentist then returns inside their practice and tests the sample. If it’s positive, it usually activates the test very quickly. If it’s negative, the patient will know in 15 minutes. The dentist reports the results to the person and forwards results to the county state each day.
    The test results, whether positive or negative, have had a significant impact on access to care. If positive, dental team members are sent home to quarantine, while other staffers are tested. Many dentists have related that the tests—when negative—result in immediate relief on the part of the employee and the rest of the team. Before the rapid tests were available, staffers were sidelined for 5-7 days or more while waiting for results. If the results were negative, the practice lost that many work days from that employee.
    “These rapid tests are having a big impact on productivity and morale in dental teams,” said MDA President, Dr. Jason Tanguay. “To my knowledge, Montana is still the only state who has dentists testing other dentists and dental team members with these rapid tests. Our colleagues in other states wish they had this tool.”