The NYS Department of Health is issuing letters to practitioners in NYS regarding the prescribing of opioid analgesics for use in palliative care and the treatment of severe acute pain. These letters are going out over the signature of Joshua S. Vinciguerra, Director, Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement (BNE).

According to BNE, the intent of the letter is educational, NOT punitive. It is not based on an analysis of any practitioner’s actual prescribing pattern even though it implies this. If you receive this letter and have concerns or questions, contact the BNE at


April 12, 2016 ­­­— The Fifth District Dental Society, a professional membership association representing and serving dentists in eight New York counties, has selected Bankers Healthcare Group as its financing partner. Bankers Healthcare Group is a leading provider of financial solutions for healthcare professionals. This partnership will allow the Fifth District Dental Society to offer its members access to BHG’s suite of financial solutions for practitioners, including business and personal loans, credit cards and insurance services.

“The Fifth District Dental Society of the State of New York is excited to be working with Bankers Healthcare Group to offer credit card, business and personal loan opportunities for our members.  The fact that BHG is a local organization that only works with healthcare professionals makes this relationship a perfect fit,” said Fifth District Dental Society Executive Director Amy Pozzi. “BHG understands the unique financial needs and concerns of dental practitioners.  Our members will genuinely appreciate the credit card double rewards for purchases and payments related to the practice of dentistry. As a dental society, we are continually striving to provide our members with new products and services that will enhance the daily operation of their practices.  We look forward to seeing what other products BHG will deliver for dental professionals, and hope the anticipated success of this program will bring other New York state dental societies on board.”

“We’re thrilled to be working with the Fifth District Dental Society and its members,” said BHG President Bob Castro. “Healthcare providers work in a challenging, evolving industry. Bankers Healthcare Group is proud to be a financial partner dedicated solely to their needs. By partnering with professional associations, BHG is able to provide dental and other healthcare professionals with custom solutions to meet their financial goals.”

Personal and Business Loans: BHG’s loan programs provide healthcare professionals with tailored solutions to meet their unique needs and goals both personally and professionally.

BHG Power MasterCard®: The BHG Power MasterCard is the only card designed exclusively for healthcare professionals. It offers premium features and benefits, including a customized rewards program offering double points for healthcare-related purchases like medical equipment and supplies, continuing education and association membership fees.

BHG Insurance Services: BHGIS, a sister company of Bankers Healthcare Group, possesses a unique understanding of the needs and challenges facing today’s healthcare professionals, and offers tailored insurance offerings to give providers security, stability and peace of mind.

For more information about the partnership, please visit

About Bankers Healthcare Group

Since 2001, Bankers Healthcare Group has been committed to providing hassle-free financing solutions to healthcare professionals, including personal and commercial loans, credit cards and insurance services. BHG has provided more than $2 billion in funding to thousands of satisfied customers nationwide. Inc. has recognized the company ten times for growth and job creation.

About the Fifth District Dental Society

The Fifth District Dental Society is a professional membership association representing and providing services to over 650 member dentists in the New York State counties of Herkimer, Jefferson, Madison, Oneida, Onondaga, Oswego, Lewis, and St. Lawrence. The Fifth District Dental Society, established in 1868, is a component of the New York State Dental Association and the American Dental Association.

Contact: Amy Pozzi (315) 434-9161


Fifth District Receives Hallmarks of Excellence Award!

The Fifth District Dental Society’s “Speed Dating for the Resident and New Dentist” received the prestigious New York State Dental Association’s (NYSDA) Hallmarks of Excellence Award for Excellence in Membership Enhancement and New Dentist Outreach.  The Award recognizes outstanding local district programs in the areas of membership enhancement, education/information, community service, new dentist outreach, and legislative achievement.  The award and the plaque were presented to the Executive Director, Ms. Amy Pozzi, at the NYSDA House of Delegates in June. This is the first award the Fifth District has received from NYSDA.



Guidance from the New York State Board for Dentistry: Teeth Whitening

Date: November 2009

Recently, consumers in New York State have been exposed to a significant number of products involving teeth whitening. While certain over-the-counter products may be safe, other products available for self application or through retail outlets have the potential to cause harm.

  • Underlying dental health conditions may make a patient a poor candidate for certain teeth whitening processes. These processes may not be effective, and may actually do harm to a patient’s teeth and gums.
  • The application of teeth whitening products in a retail outlet, not subject to the infection control requirements of a dental office, creates a risk of disease transmission for the consumer and individuals working in such an establishment.
  • The application of teeth whitening products by or with the assistance of someone who is not a licensed dentist or dental hygienist may constitute the illegal practice of the profession of dentistry, which is a crime.
  • The State Board for Dentistry office will refer any allegations of the illegal practice of dentistry to the Office of Professional Discipline for investigation. Individuals should consult with a licensed dental health professional and have their overall dental health evaluated before making decisions regarding teeth whitening products and services.

Guidance to Dental Professionals on the Ebola Virus

Guidance to Dental Professionals on the Ebola Virus
As of October 16, 2014, dental professionals are advised of the following:

A person infected with Ebola is not considered contagious until symptoms appear. Due to the virulent nature of the disease, it is highly unlikely that someone with Ebola symptoms will seek dental care when they are severely ill. However, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the ADA Division of Science, dental professionals are advised to take a medical history, including a travel history from their patients with symptoms in which a viral infection is suspected.

Any person within 21 days of returning from the West African countries Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea may be at risk of having contacted persons infected with Ebola and may not exhibit symptoms. If this is the case, dental professionals are advised to delay routine dental care of the patient until 21 days have elapsed from their trip. Palliative care for serious oral health conditions, dental infections and pain can be provided if necessary after consulting with the patient’s physician and conforming to standard precautions and physical barriers.

An elevated temperature (fever) is often a consequence of infection, but Ebola is not the only infection that may have similar signs and symptoms. The most common signs and symptoms of Ebola infection are:

  • fever (greater than 38.6°C or 101.5°F) and severe headache
  • muscle pain
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • stomach pain or unexplained bleeding or bruising

You are advised not to treat dental patients if they have these signs and symptoms for Ebola. If a patient is feeling feverish and their travel history indicates they may be at risk of Ebola, dental professionals and staff in contact with the patient should:

  • immediately protect themselves by using standard precautions with physical barriers (gowns, masks, face protection, and gloves)
  • immediately call 911 on behalf of the patient
  • notify the appropriate state or local health department authorities
  • ask the health department to provide you and your staff with the most up-to-date guidance on removing and disposing of potentially contaminated materials and equipment, including the physical barriers.

The Ebola virus is spread through direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes) with blood and body fluids (urine, feces, saliva, vomit and semen) of a person who is sick with Ebola, or with objects (like needles) that have been contaminated with the virus. Ebola is not spread through the air or by water or, in general, by food. Again, there is no reported risk of transmission of Ebola from asymptomatic infected patients.

Information and resources on Ebola are posted on the CDC’s website at A checklist for healthcare providers (PDF) specific to Ebola is included on the site.

Additional Resources



Mandatory ePrescribing Delayed until March 27, 2016

NYSDA Successful in Delaying Implementation of Mandatory ePrescribing

Friday, March 13, 2015

ALBANY – Legislation was passed today to delay the start of mandatory electronic prescribing in New York State until March 27, 2016. The New York State Dental Association (NYSDA) was part of a large coalition of healthcare providers urging this delay in order to provide a smooth transition into e-prescribing and to insure patient safety was not compromised.

When e-prescribing was first announced, NYSDA immediately went to work on behalf of its members to advocate for reasonable standards and to seek out a program that could be offered for the lowest possible cost. “I am proud that dentistry was way ahead of the other healthcare professions on this issue,” stated NYSDA President Dr. John Liang, “and our Technology Task Force was able to identify a very good solution that we were able to get for members at a very competitive price.” It became apparent, however, that most of these electronic prescribing companies, including our endorsed solution through Henry Schein, may have underestimated the complexity of implementing the solution due to significant government requirements.

Both Henry Schein and NYSDA are working hard to help members with the sign-up procedure, but the overwhelming demand, coupled with the complexity of the process, has caused a backlog that has frustrated those who are enrolling in e-prescribing. “We appreciate everyone’s patience in this process. Now that the mandate has been delayed, we expect our partners will catch up with getting providers on board,” added Dr. Mark Feldman, NYSDA Executive Director.

“NYSDSA and Henry Schein are continuing to look for new and creative solutions to ease the difficulty of implementation including postponing monthly payments, click-to-chat support and self-serve implementations checklists for providers that would rather do it on their own.”
Members are urged to sign up and not put off enrolling in an e-prescribe program so they are prepared when March 27, 2016 comes around. Although the mandate has been delayed, there are many benefits to start e-prescribing immediately. Members can learn more by reading the January edition of The New York State Dental Journal. The Journal was mailed to all members and is available online at under the publications tab. For those who want to begin the sign-up process, you can call (800) 734-5561 (Option 2) and ask for the NYSDA endorsed e-prescribing program.

Dr. Liang wants members to know that “We will continue to provide updates on e-prescribing and work hard to be sure all have the ability to send their prescriptions electronically when March 27, 2016 arrives and paper scripts will no longer be accepted in New York. This has been a confusing and frustrating process. We are glad we were able to obtain a delay in the start of e-prescribing.”

New York Sexual Harassment Regulations: A Summary of Action Items for Employers

February 11, 2019

In the wake of the #MeToo movement and the nationwide discourse over the prevalence of sexual harassment in the workplace, New York State has taken aggressive steps to implement stronger protections against workplace harassment.  These new protections, which are now law in New York State and New York City, will require New York employers to revise their policies, procedures and agreements, deliver new training, and provide employees with additional information about sexual harassment.

Model Policy

These new requirements took effect October 9, 2018. While a policy must be in place by October 9, 2018, employers now have until October 9, 2019 to complete the training. 

Every employer must adopt the model sexual harassment prevention policy or establish a policy that equals or exceeds the minimum standards provided by the state’s policy. The policy must be provided to all employees in writing.

Training Program

Click below for related documents:

Every employer must utilize the state’s model sexual harassment prevention training program or establish a training program that equals or exceeds the minimum standards provided by the state’s model training. The training must be provided annually to all employees.

The law also contains provisions on sexual harassment relating to non-employees (e.g., contractors).