May 2019 Volume LIV Number 3


Member Benefit Spotlight

AAPD Reference Manual

November 2017 Volume LII Number 6

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), in accordance with its vision and mission, advocates optimal oral health for all chil- dren and individuals with special health care needs. It is the leading national advocate dedicated exclusively to children’s oral health. Advocacy activities take place within the broader health care community and with the public at local, regional, and national levels. The AAPD Reference Manual (RM), issue six of Pediatric Dentistry’s seven issue journal, is one of the components of the Academy’s advocacy activities.

The RM’s reorganization and classification, a joint venture of the Evidence-Based Dentistry Committee and Council on Clinical Affairs, is in response to evolving guideline standards in the larger health care community. Please note the changes you will find: the term Recommendations is used to distinguish guidelines from definitions, oral health care polices and resources. Also, there are two subcat- egories of recommendations: Clinical Practice Guidelines and Best Practices. The distinction is determined by the methodology employed to develop the recommendations.

Clinical Practice Guidelines, as redefined by the National Academy of Medicine, are "statements that include recommendations intended to optimize patient care that are informed by a systematic review of evidence and an assessment of the benefits and harms of alternative care options." Each AAPD guideline will describe the methodology used in its development. The term evidence-based will not appear in the title of documents based upon systematic reviews. This will prevent any implication that the consensus-based guidelines are deficient or their value should be diminished.

Best Practices, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, are "the best clinical or administrative practice or ap- proach at the moment, given the situation, the consumer’s or community’s needs and desires, the evidence about what works for this situation/need/desire, and the resources available." Best Practices would also include guidelines peripherally related to clinical care, such as informed consent and record-keeping procedures.

Visit for the 2017-18 RM’s online version, available soon on the AAPD’s app as well.

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