As I look back on the first couple months of 2015, I am so proud to be part of an active association that promotes education, legislation, credentialing and professional activities. It has been refreshing to see members who have come together and showed our many stakeholders that our voice is united, strong, professional and passionate. And we don't give up--now let's keep the momentum going!
Get Involved In Your Association!
As we move through Spring and into Summer, I challenge you to become an active member of our strong professional team of the American Dental Assistant Association (ADAA). By joining the ADAA, you automatically become a member of our state chapter, the North Dakota Dental Assistants Association. (NDDAA). Many positive changes are occurring because the movement to improve access to oral healthcare did not happen without our members participating in discussions with stakeholders and legislators.
Here's how you can get involved:
This upcoming year will be filled with exciting changes and continued progress of the profession of Dental Assisting. I invite you to be a part of this progress over the next year and the next legislative session. As always, the NDDAA follows the ADDA Mission Statement, "To advance the careers of dental assistants and to promote the dental assisting profession in the matters of education, legislation, credentialing and professional activities which enhance the delivery of quality dental health care to the public."
How are you going to become involved? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know.
Tyler Winter, CDA, RDA, LDA
NDDAA State President
NDDAA and Daniel Biesheuvel have organized a NDSCS Dental Assisting scholarship in memory of Wanda Biesheuvel. To read more about Wanda and her amazing dedication to Dental Assisting, see the beautiful story below. If you would like to contribute toward the scholarship please make checks out to: Wanda Biesheuvel Memorial Scholarship and send to: Daniel Biesheuvel 615 N 18th street Bismarck, ND 58504.
NDDAA and Daniel Biesheuvel are organizing a NDSCS dental assisting scholarship in memory of Wanda Biesheuvel.
If you would like to contribute toward the scholarship please mail donation to Lisa Morgan 419 24th St S #3 Fargo ND 58103 or bring along to state meeting & give to Lisa at that time.
Ethiopian Dental Care Trip
My name is Daniel Biesheuvel. I was married to Wanda (Milton) Biesheuvel for twenty-three years and nine months and eighteen days until her sudden death at home on July 3, 2014. Now I can go on and on about Wanda and our twenty-five years together, but I want to tell you about our Trip to the Jemo church compound in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Our church, Bismarck Community Church (BCC), in Bismarck, ND began a partnership a year and a half ago with Jemo. We found Jemo through the help of Children?s Hope Chest (CHC). CHC matches churches with compounds to aid in financing projects needed by that compound. Our goal is to make Jemo self-sufficient within seven years. BCC also sponsors 200 children at Jemo. Each sponsorship pays for a mandatory school uniform, school supplies, food for the child in school and cooking oil and flour for the family. Wanda and I planned on going on a mission trip in 2015 for our twenty-fifth anniversary. Then the call came to make us change our plans.
Last fall, CHC decided to bring a medical team to Jemo to review the health needs of the compound, do some medical assessments, care for any immediate medical needs and provide food and activities for those children. Wanda was asked to provide dental care and education. Of course, she immediately said yes. I was asked to be the official photographer for the trip.
For the next six months the medical staff researched the area, talked to CHC staff about the needs in Jemo and accumulated the medical supplies for the trip. Each volunteer needed to raise the $2800 for trip expenses so public and personal fund-raisers were held.
When May 8, 2014 arrived we took the dozen plastic totes full of supplies and each person were allowed two suitcases for personal clothing and more supplies. We left Bismarck, flew to Washington, DC and the next day boarded Ethiopian Air for Africa. Thirteen hours later we landed in Addis Ababa, gathered the dozens of pieces of baggage, went through customs, loaded them all on the top of two buses and drove to the Monarch Hotel where we stayed.
Sunday we visited the compound and attended their church service. We were greeted by scores of beautiful children and their families.
The next day the medical services began. Each day the children sang to us when we arrived. The children eagerly lined up and five were brought in at a time. Eye chart exams were done, dental care was completed, dermatological and spa treatments were performed, medical assessments were done, essential vitamins, meds were issued and eye drops were applied. Each child?s height, weight and vitals were taken and they visited with a local doctor. Each area had a local interpreter to assist in communication.
Now to what Wanda did.
Wanda with the help of her interpreter, Natneal McKennon, helped five children at a time. Wanda checked each child?s teeth, assessing their age and looking for any problems. Any immediate dental needs were directed to a follow-up visit with a local dentist. Wanda applied a fluoride treatment to each child, provided them a new toothbrush, toothpaste and then taught that group how to properly brush. In a two day period, Wanda saw over two hundred children, brushing her own teeth with them forty-three times! It was the best time she ever had.
Wanda has been a certified dental assistant for thirty one years. In 2008 she was recognized by the Dental Assisting National Board and the North Dakota Dental Assisting Association for twenty-five years of service. She faithfully attended seminars to keep up her certification credits for all those years, even after a shoulder surgery prevented her from chair-side the last six years of her life. She was the assistant for Dr. William Congdon for twenty-eight years and for Dr. Richard Heib for three years. She then became the front desk manager for Dr. Arliss Brend. She was a valued and respected dental professional who was consulted by her dentists on a regular basis for advice on proper patient dental care. She was dedicated to her trade and never accepted anything but the best for her patients and from her co-workers. The dental profession has lost a valuable and loved member.
Wanda was in her element at Jemo. She loved Ethiopia, she loved the Jemo compound, the staff and volunteers. She adored all the children she came into contact with. She especially loved working with her interpreter, Natty. Wanda was ready to go back at the very first chance she could. She was already preparing for the next medical trip to Jemo or any other compound Children's Hope Chest directed her to.
She lived her life serving others, loving others and being a perfect role-model for all around her. I, correction, WE will all miss her.
For those who do not know me I am the new 7th District Trustee. I have been in dentistry for approximately 24 years. I love dental assisting and can't imagine doing anything else other than being part of a dental clinic.
I have been working at A Lifetime of Smiles in Bismarck for over 19 years. My doctors of 16 years just recently retired and we have 2 new dentists.
I have been on the ND Dental Assistants Association board for 22 years serving as state representative and several terms as President-Elect, President and Immediate Past President.
Being involved as a trustee has been a goal of mine for a very long time and I look forward to the challenge. My first year has just finished and I have learned a LOT, but know there are still things that I need to learn.
Please feel free to contact me if there is anything that you need help with or have questions on. I will try my best to get the answers for you.
This past year the convention was in New Orleans. There were forums on social media, membership, legislation are just a few to mention. The ADAA Board continues to strive forward in getting our profession the recognition that it deserves. I believe that we have made some great steps in the last year. The future of the dental assisting profession relies on all of getting the best kept secret told!
Jennie Aasand, RDA
7th District Trustee, ADAA
by Kim Laudenslager