Australian Dental Association
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Established in 1928, the Australian Dental Association (ADA) is the peak national body for the dental profession in Australia encompassing the majority of dentists in the country. Based in St Leonards, Sydney, it is a voluntary member organisation with branches in every state and territory which has three main objectives:
- To support members by enhancing their ability to provide safe, high quality professional oral health care
- To encourage the improvement of the oral and general health of the public
- Promotion of the ethics, art and science of dentistry
Drawing on these core objectives, the ADA has devised a Strategic Plan 2016–2019 which articulates four key goals for the organisation:
(1) Increase leadership profile and professional influence
The Australian Dental Association is recognised as the peak body whose professionalview is actively sought to influences policy on all matters relevant to oral health.
(2) Provide relevant, accessible and valued member services
The Australian Dental Association is seen as the authoritative provider of guides and protocols, Continuing Professional Development material, policies that accurately reflect regulatory guidelines and a National Code of Ethics.
(3) Develop and maintain professional and quality standards of practice
The Australian Dental Association’s Standards govern, guide and advance the practise of dentistry.
(4) Promote community oral health
The Australian Dental Association to be identified by the public and relevant stakeholders as the authority in providing information and advice pertaining to oral health.
The constitution of the ADA stipulates that the organisation is to be governed by its members.
At a national level, the ADA is governed by the Federal Council, which in effect operates as a board of directors, and which is responsible for the strategic direction, vision, and high level operation of the Association. Federal Council comprises 17 Councillors elected by their Branch and a representative from each Branch (usually the Branch President).
On an annual basis the Federal Council elects five Federal Councillors to the Federal Executive, comprising a President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and two Executive Councillors.
The Federal Executive is subject to the general control and direction of the Federal Council. It can, however, make financial and operational decisions for the purpose of implementing any objects, policies and powers of the Association to ensure that the strategic outcomes set out by Federal Council are achieved.
Federal Council and Executive are supported by an experienced secretariat and a range of specialist committees all working toward supporting the membership and improving Australia's oral health.
The ADA maintains an active presence in every state and territory via its Branches who provide education and face-to-face assistance to members, delivering public oral health advisory services, and advocating on issues impacting key stakeholders in a particular state or territory.
Australian Dental Congress
Every two years the Association stages a major conference, the Australian Dental Congress, which brings together dental professionals from Australia and around the world for discussion and education on the science, clinical practice, and business of dentistry. The Congress has been a regular feature on the calendar of the dental profession since 1907, providing attendees with the opportunity to discuss the scientific, technical and digital advances and developments that are changing the face of dentistry. The next Congress, to be held May 2019, will be staged in Adelaide, Australia.