I just finished reading the Guest Editorial1 in the JCDA. Usually these days, when I read something I totally disagree with I don't say anything because it does little good. However, this one page was so off the mark that I could not let it go.
The issue in organized dentistry is relevance, not in the detail of who is in charge but in the actions the organizations take on weighty matters. We have a gross oversupply of dentists in virtually every part of this country. We have insurance plans with yearly limits that have not increased in many years. We have bootleg unlicensed dentists that can only seem to be stopped for short periods in all of our major cities. We have research journals virtually devoid of research that makes any difference to us as practising dentists at all. In Ontario, we have become the joking material of dentistry worldwide because of the inability to treat our own spouses, and you think diversity in leadership in dental organizations is a grave problem? Wake up, my friend.
The field of dentistry is undergoing challenges that threaten to destroy most of the incentives we in the past considered important lures leading us into the profession. You're interested in painting the boat while it's sinking. Why doesn't CDA lead the charge to reduce dental school enrolment across the country 30% or even 50%? Now there would be something useful to take care of. It would make no difference if the person at the helm was white, black, native, male, female, or 12 years old for that matter.
- Lam E. Falling short in organized dentistry: a call for increased diversity. J Can Dent Assoc. 2013;79(4):d100.