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Health and Well-Being Program

Addiction Is Risky Enough, Getting Help Shouldn't Be

Don’t take the chance

Substance abuse disorders and other addictions are real hazards to dental professionals. You may feel shame, guilt and a sense of worthlessness. It’s hard to function. Likewise, the stress of dental practice can sometimes become unmanageable. You have so much at stake: your practice, your reputation and the well-being of your family, patients and employees. But there is help available.

Get the help you need

Start the recovery process through the Michigan Dental Association’s Health and Well-Being Program. The advocacy program offers dental professionals struggling with substance abuse disorders and/or emotional disorders the help they need by tapping into other dental professionals who’ve had similar experiences – dentists helping dentists.

The MDA’s Health and Well-Being Program:

  • matches those in need with concerned colleagues who’ve had similar experiences; 
  • helps you feel good about yourself again;
  • rebuilds family and professional relationships;
  • assists recovery so you can enjoy life again — including practicing dentistry; and
  • is available to dentists, dental office staff, dental students, and their family members.

With you every step of the way

The MDA’s Health and Well-Being Program uses a proven process to help dental professionals fight addictions or other personal problems through:

Early Identification
The sooner a problem is recognized and treated, the better the chance for recovery. Addiction and other personal or practice problems affect your entire family as well as colleagues, employees – even your professional standing.

Early Intervention
The MDA’s Health and Well-Being Program wants to help because its members have been there. They know. So the sooner you’re referred, the sooner you can start on the road to recovery.

Remain anonymous
Your identity, family and practice are protected at all times, so all you have to worry about is getting your life back.

Taking the first step

The MDA’s Health and Well-Being Program has a special phone number: (517) 643-4171. All calls are strictly confidential. You don’t have to identify yourself. Just speak to our trained staff and you’ll be given the number of a concerned colleague who is also a program member.

After your initial call, background information is gathered so you can start getting the help you need. If you’re calling about a family or dental team member, you’ll be informed about contact made with them regarding your concerns.

Reporting licensees and convictions

The safety of patients, co-workers and their families always takes first priority. As a health professional, you may find yourself having "reasonable cause to believe" that a colleague is "impaired." You are required by state law to report that person to state licensure authorities. Mandatory reporting doesn’t apply if you obtain the knowledge as a patient or when serving on a peer review committee for a professional association or health facility. Michigan law requires licensees to report their own convictions. Report convictions to the state at (517) 373-9196, or to the Michigan Health Professionals Recovery Program at (800) 453-3784. In addition, MDA policy requires members to also self-report felony convictions to the MDA Committee on Peer Review/Ethics withing 30 days of the felony conviction. To report, call the MDA at 800-372-9070.

If you suspect that you or another health professional are unable to practice due to substance abuse disorders and/or emotional disorders, or have any concerns, please call MDA’s Health and Well-Being Program at (517) 643-4171. Your call is always confidential. And they’re here to help you.

MDA's Health and Well-Being Program
(517) 643-4171