Virginia Dental Association urges patients to visit the dentist, not ER for oral issues to ease strain on hospitals


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(WFXR) – As the latest COVID-19 surge is putting a large strain on hospital emergency rooms, leaders from the Virginia Dental Association (VDA) urge patients to visit the dentist for oral pain, not the hospital, to help ease that strain on local ERs.

The Health Policy Institute says that up to 78 percent of dental-related emergency room visits across the country could be diverted to a dentist’s office or another healthcare setting.

“If you are experiencing mouth or jaw pain, call a dentist before going to overcrowded emergency rooms. Seeking care first from a dentist will allow most patients to have the root cause of their issue addressed more quickly, while helping to relieve Virginia’s strained hospital system due to the latest COVID-19 surge. Many dentists can fit patients in immediately to help alleviate pain.”

Dr. Omar Abubaker, VDA member and VCU School of Dentistry Professor

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