Over 23 million Americans struggle with addiction, but only 10-percent are getting treatment.
Mental and physical illnesses, including alcohol and other drug addiction, can potentially impair practice and health. It is estimated at any given time 15-20% of the health care professionals are affected. Alcohol and other drug addiction, as well as mental and physical illnesses, are treatable. The Kansas Dental Association and the Heart of America Professional Network are working together to assist all health care professionals who may have a problem or illness that has or could impair their ability to practice safely.
Professionals may have physical signs of drug or alcohol abuse such as slurred speech and impaired motor coordination or behavioral signs like frequent reports of illness, depression or difficulty meeting deadlines. These often lead to practice related issues including changes in competency, improperly performed procedures and patient or family complaints.
Research indicates that dentists are no more (or less) susceptible to drug and/or alcohol problems than the general public. However, an untreated substance use disorder in a dentist can place patients, and the practice itself, in jeopardy. It can also threaten the dentist’s health, life and family stability.
Self-referrals to the program are encouraged, but referrals may be made by a family member, a friend, employer or anyone concerned about the licensee. Anonymous referrals are not accepted. However, a person may call for information or advice without giving their name. Referrals may be made by calling 913.236.7575. Once a referral is made, notification is sent to the individual to obtain an evaluation and to sign release of information forms for the evaluator, employer, and the licensing board. We have a network of evaluators throughout the state. When the evaluation is received in the HAPN office it is reviewed and determined if monitoring is needed.
HAPN will report to the Kansas Dental Board if the professional lacks cooperation when first referred , an non-compliance with the HAPN agreement, all violations of the HAPN agreement including any relapse and any and all behaviors that give any concern of safety in patient care.
Read more about the KDA Well Being Program
Who Do I Call?
You may contact either:
Heart of America Professional Network
6405 Metcalf, Suite 205
Overland Park, Kansas 66202
Greg Hill, Program Director
Kansas Dental Association
5200 SW Huntoon
Topeka, Kansas 66604