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From the President

Jennifer Pierce
I promised that I would keep all of you updated on the progress that we have made since my last message and I always try to keep my promises. I want you to know that the Iowa Dental Hygienists' Association has been working very hard on your behalf this year!! Here is an update on the legislation that I referenced in my last Presidents Message on this website. It is going to pass with language that protects hygienists in statue from Dental Assistants being able to perform supragingival scaling in our state!! This same legislation will open up settings where a dental hygienist will be able to practice, paving the way for a more colorful future, different directions and job opportunities for ALL hygienists BOTH clinical and public health. IDHA Leaders along with our Lobbyist were able to meet with the Iowa Dental Association (IDA) and the Iowa Dental Board (IDB) to work on this legislation and express our concerns about the language. We were also able to voice some of our ideas on what we would like the future of our profession to look like. I am really encouraged about the new positive culture between the IDA and our Association and look forward to hopefully working with them on future mutual endeavors and continuing the open communication and dialogue that we are experiencing with them.

Once we were all on the same page both of our Associations spoke in favor of the bill and were able to move it forward to the legislature where it is expected to pass into law this Spring. There are three parts to this bill. #1 allows Level II Assistants to be able to place sealants. #2 is the settings that will open up for both Dental Hygienists and Dental Assistants. Rules made by the Dental Board will dictate the type of supervision that will govern both. #3 the scaling language is going back to the original language that protects us from Dental Assistants being able to remove plaque and stain with anything more than a rubber cup polisher.

IDHA also has some other changes that we are working on with the Dental Board that will hopefully come to fruition this summer. I am not able to speak to them at this time but keep your eyes and ears peeled for a rule that will benefit private practice hygienists as well as public health hygienists in the near future. I will keep you updated with more on that hopefully closer to the end of my term in May.

My excitement continues for all of the things that we were able to accomplish and are still in the process of accomplishing this year for the profession of Dental Hygiene in this state. Our Association is also working on some restructuring of Bylaws ect. and I really hope that after my term is done that we are going to keep that momentum going and that you will start to see more positive things happening in the world of dental hygiene. We are really working on keeping all of you in the loop about these things. We are going be working on communication with our members more within the next year but we need more member involvement. If you have ever considered getting involved, now is the time! We need you, your ideas, your thoughts!!

Speaking of my term coming to an end in May, if you are registering for Annual Session, please sign up for the Presidents Party. I would absolutely love having everyone there as I am such a people person. It is always a lot of fun and there are light snacks and a cash bar, such a great way to unwind after all of the education that we will absorb earlier in the day and I would totally welcome your support!

Lastly I would like to say that it has been an honor to serve as your President this year. It has definitely been a learning and growing experience and I consider myself very fortunate to have had this opportunity to start to shake things up a bit for us. It has opened my eyes to how important protecting and fighting for our profession is and that we cannot be complacent. WE must be proactive, WE must ask for what WE want and go after it. WE must communicate and have the hygienists in our state on our side when we are fighting for the things that WE want for public health AND private practice. To all of you who HAVE come to me with ideas, I heard you. Your Association IS listening and working to try and change things and move our profession forward in a direction that will benefit us all. All I am asking in return is that you stand with us so we can keep what we have started rolling on.

Be sure to come and find me at Annual Session and say Hello!!
Looking forward to seeing you all!!

Jen Pierce RDH

Member Spotlight

St.PierreName: Gail “Renee” St.Pierre-“Piper”
Years in Dental Hygiene: 25 years
Years of Membership: 25 years
Family: Two fabulous daughters: Lindsey Piper (a Social Worker/therapist) and Autumn Tanner (who is a dental assistant) and 2 wonderful grandsons
How I got interested in Dental Hygiene: I accidentally got into dental assisting through a friend who asked me to go with her and I was recruited into the dental assisting program. After 13 years of assisting I decided I wanted to move up the theoretical ladder and provide more one on one care to my clients. I also wanted to teach and later I had the opportunity as the program director to initially develop the Dental Hygiene program at Iowa Central Community College.
Favorite Instrument: 204s is my favorite instrument
Memorable moment: I think I have many favorable moments in my dental hygiene career (initially developing a fantastic dental hygiene program at Iowa Central and the numerous community outreach events that I was able to develop, Share Your Smiles, OHANCAW screenings. My most favorite thing is when former students reach out to me for advice or come up to me at a conference years later and thank me for being their advocate and give me a hug and tell me about their success and that makes me feel like I succeeded.

Upcoming Events


August 15th General Assembly via Zoom

October Fall Event Cancelled