What is a Denturist?
In November of 1994, the People of the State of Washington passed Initiative 607, allowing persons other than dentists to manufacture and sell dentures to the public. This new profession would be known as a Denturist.
Why Become a Member?
SOME OF THE BENEFITS OF BEING A MEMBER
Hopefully, at some point this year, you will be receiving a request to contribute to the Washington Denturist Political Action Committee (WDPAC). This is a request that should not be ignored. Instead it should be viewed as a key investment in the success and survival of your business – since politics and government oversee everything your business does. The WDPAC is the easiest way for you to get involved in what government is doing.
WDPAC was set up to help build WDA’s voice in the political process and to help maintain a strong voice as the Legislature and other elected officials debate bills that will impact your industry and your business.
Most health care provider groups have PACs and many of them are very well-funded – particularly the Dentists. While WDA may not be able to get to the $300,000 plus of the Dentist PAC, we can get to an amount that will enable us to make sure Denturist supporters are elected to the Legislature in 2010. The more Denturist supporters are elected, the easier it will be to get the insurance changes and other protections needed to keep Denturists as a vital and valuable health care provider in Washington state!
Writing a check is the easiest form of political action there is – and it can have the most impact when combined through a political action committee to help elect people who would vote as you would vote if you were in Olympia!
So please write that check! Strong political action — through in-district calls and letters to legislators, effective lobbying in Olympia, and a commitment to the election process through the political action committee– is the trifecta that will ensure Denturism is an industry that will survive and thrive in Washington state!
Washington State Denturist
Why is it important to become a member of the Washington Denturist Association if you are a licensed Denturist or studying to become one?
We can not stress the importance of unity in a profession more…
A Lesson to Learn
The following article was written by Phil Harvey.
In 1980 the State of Arizona passed a law allowing Denturists to become certified and with a prescription from a Dentist, work directory with the patient. A 40 member association got the law passed and became the only certified Denturists in the state of Arizona. There was no school for future Denturists, no test, nothing. It was great for them, but it all went down hill from there. The state advisory board was controlled by those who were not in favor of the law. Since there was no schooling or testing set up, the number of Denturists could not be increased, hence they had no power in numbers, no real organization and no power to lobby. Today, there are still no state board approved schools for future Denturists in Arizona and only 11 certified Denturists left.
Washington state is one of the greatest states in which to practice Denturism. This could radically change in just one election cycle (2 yrs.). Political power can shift quickly without opposition. Without a strong Denturist organization and a good lobbyist we could end up like Arizona. The founders of the Washington Denturist Association (WDA) created an association designed to promote the profession of Denturism and preserve the current scope of practice by employing a lobbyist to fight for our cause in the state legislature. The members of the WDA provide a pool for future state board members which are sympathetic to our profession. The WDA also provides continuing education for Denturists. They are also monitoring the current educational program and will be aggressively seeking a good educational program that will produce well trained professionals as new Denturists.
I was living in Arizona in 1980. I was opening my own dental laboratory but because I was not part of the 40 people who set up the Denturism program I was not allowed to become a Denturist after the law was enacted. The Arizona Denturism law was basically an inside deal for those 40 people. It was not designed to promote our profession and today Denturism is dying in Arizona.
It is naive of any Denturist in the State of Washington to think they can survive in isolation. It is the political power of the Initiative that gave us our opportunity to practice in Washington state. Through organizing and working together we insure that we maintain this opportunity. It is to our advantage to maintain a strong organization andpromote schools to train future Denturists. We will someday want to retire and will need someone to buy our practices. Let’s work together to build our profession. The more we have in numbers the greater our power to influence the legislature and Washington state law. Let’s learn a lesson from Arizona.