COVID-19 response

View our advocacy timeline to see how the Australian Dental Association (ADA) and the Australian Dental Association Victorian Branch (ADAVB) have represented and supported members through the pandemic and promoted dental care.

  • Provided advice and guidance on restriction and public health order developments, as well as managing risk and exposures in the dental practice.
  • Secured access to COVID-19 vaccinations for the dental team in phase 1B of the vaccination roll out (phase 1A for dental practitioners working in high-risk settings).  
  • Successfully advocated for private dental practices to remain an essential service during multiple lockdowns in Victoria. 
  • Successfully advocated for expansion of the urgent and emergency care parameters. 
  • Provided HR advice to members.
  • Advocated for dental practices’ eligibility for the Victorian Business Costs Assistance Program grant.
  • Facilitated dentists’ input into the Victorian vaccination roll-out communication strategy through a study by the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute.
  • Held Q&A webinars on vaccinations for the dental team, addressing vaccine hesitancy, returning to practice with a high number of COVID cases in Victoria, risk management principles for dentistry and avoiding burnout for mental health.

October–December 2020

  • Supported the “Don’t wait mate” campaign to encourage people not to delay or avoid healthcare during the pandemic.
  • Held webinars on PPE use, supporting mental health and changes to the Federal Government’s stimulus packages.
  • Following advocacy by the ADAVB and our members, some members who didn’t receive the first Victorian Business Support Fund began to receive the Fund after their applications were reassessed by Business Victoria at the direction of the Victorian Ombudsman.
  • Maintained contact with PPE suppliers to monitor stock levels during periods of manufacturing disruption.
  • Updated Victorian members on changing mask rules, density limits and other requirements.

August–September 2020 (Victoria)

  • Maintained contact with the Victorian Chief Health Officer, Health Minister, DHHS and other relevant organisations.
  • Successfully advocated for earliest possible easing of dental restrictions in line with Victoria’s roadmap to reopening. Dental restrictions were eased three weeks earlier than initially planned by the Victorian government.
  • Advocated for the Victorian 2020 Grand Final Eve/Thank You public holiday to be cancelled due to ongoing impacts on small businesses.
  • Approached Business Victoria, relevant ministers and the Victorian Ombudsman regarding dental practices’ issues with the first Business Support Fund, and supported members to lodge complaints.
  • Conducted surveys to understand the financial impact on private dental practices and used the data to support advocacy activities.
  • Gained access to healthcare worker infection data which provided a greater understanding of the risk in dental settings.
  • Kept members informed with regular updates.

June–July 2020 (Victoria)

  • Continued monitoring of COVID-19 case trends across the state.
  • Maintained contact with the Victorian Chief Health Officer.
  • Attended briefings with the Victorian Health Minister.
  • Provided updates and recommendations to members as soon as information becomes available.
  • Conducted surveys to understand the financial impact on private dental practices and used the data to support advocacy activities.
  • Invited members, on behalf of the Department of Health and Human Services, to be part of the COVID-19 response.

April–May 2020

  • Continued to work with suppliers and the government to source PPE.
  • Developed and held return to practice and other COVID-10 related webinars.
  • Successfully advocated for a return to level 2 dental restrictions, 27 April. Most elective surgery resumed.
  • Successfully advocated for dental practices to receive Victorian funding for small businesses.
  • Successfully advocated for a return to level 1 dental restrictions, 09 May. Some Victorian activity restrictions eased.
  • Membership renewal fees were deferred to 1 October.

March 2020

  • A dental restriction framework, created by the ADA and endorsed by the AHPPC, helped avoid a complete closure of dental practices.
  • COVID-19 resources were created.
  • Regular webinars were held.
  • Secured a limited supply of masks from the national government stockpile.

January–February 2020

  • Member advisory services were expanded.
  • Began working with suppliers and government to secure mask supply.
  • Established contact with the AHPPC to ensure dental representation.
  • The AHPPC identified aerosol generating dental procedures as high risk for COVID-19 transmission.
  • Ran a media campaign to access masks from the national government stockpile.

Further information

Click here for updates, information and resources about COVID-19.