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Academy of Laser Dentistry Well-Represented During Congressional Briefing on the Use of Photobiomodulation (Low-Level Lasers) to Stop the Opioid Crisis

ALD Delegates Emphasized the Need for Wider Clinical Use and Insurance Acceptance of Photobiomodulation (PBM) Treatment

The Academy of Laser Dentistry (ALD), was well-represented in a group of laser dentistry experts who appeared before a large gathering of senior policy officials at the Rayburn House Office Building when they appeared before the “Congressional Committee on Laser Treatment Clinical Protocols Solutions and the Opioid Crisis.”

The purpose of their testimony was threefold:
  1. Request that additional federal funding be allocated for research and clinical trials
  2. Recommend that the FDA create a PBM-specific product code
  3. Urge public and private health insurance therapy for PBM treatment
The delegation included ALD incoming president Dr. Mel Burchman; ALD corporate member James Carroll, CEO of Thor Photomedicine; government policy strategist Scot Faulkner; Dr. Claudia Cotca, founder of the Washington Institute for Dentistry & Toxicology; Dr. Praveen Arany, assistant professor at the University of Buffalo, oncology nurse Annette Quinn, RN, MSN, at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Center; Robert Boege - Executive Director of the Alliance for Science & Technology Research (ASTRA) and Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein, President of Global NetGeneration of Youth.

“There may be light at the end of the tunnel when it comes to the opioid addiction crisis,” commented Scot Faulkner. “The recent opportunity we had to explain the need for wider PBM acceptance before Congress, paired with President Trump’s recent signing of HR6 — formally titled the ‘Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act’, will help us to make a positive impact on the opioid crisis.”

The passing of HR6 was praised in an official statement of the American Dental Association, which included this comment from ADA immediate past president, Dr. Joseph Crowley: "The ADA is thrilled that Congress passed this bill. It contains many provisions that are good for both patients and providers, including additional funding for continuing education for health professionals and state prescription drug monitoring programs.”

Regarding funding, HR6 specifically authorizes the expansion of the National Institutes of Health's authority to rapidly divert funds for high-impact research in response to public health threats, such as fostering the development of non-narcotic alternatives to opioid pain relievers. “This is exactly where PBM, or low-level laser therapy will play a critical role,” predicted Faulkner.

According to ALD President-Elect Dr. Mel Burchman, “To those living in chronic pain, low-level laser therapy is a godsend. It not only provides relief, it promotes healing”. According to Dr. Burchman, the challenge includes lack of awareness about PBM and how it works, coupled with a lack of insurance reimbursement. “The United States and our medical community should be leading the way for change by understanding PBM as a method to treat pain without opioids,” added Dr. Burchman.

The Academy of Laser Dentistry is committed to raising professional and consumer awareness of PBM as a highly-effective opioid alternative. For more information on how PBM represents the future of healthcare, view this video.

For unbiased information and hands-on training regarding PBM, attend ALD’s upcoming 2019 annual meeting April 4th – 6th in Dallas. Click here for details.

Pictured in Photo
Standing L-R: Dr. Mel Burchman, Robert Boege, Scot Faulkner, Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein, Dr. Claudia C. Cotco
Sitting L-R: Dr. Praveen Arany, James Carroll and Annette Quinn

About the Academy of Laser Dentistry
The Academy of Laser Dentistry (ALD) is the only independent and unbiased non-profit association devoted to laser dentistry and includes clinicians, academicians and researchers in all laser wavelengths. The Academy is devoted to clinical education, research, and the development of standards and guidelines for the safe and effective use of dental laser technology. ALD was founded in 1993, with the merging of the International Academy of Laser Dentistry, the North American Academy of Laser Dentistry and the American Academy of Laser Dentistry.
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ALD Staff 2018-11-01
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