The ODEA was founded in 1996 by four office managers – Charlene Murray-Quandt, Judy Brink, Cathy Sams, and Sarah Seal-Harwood. These four managers thought it was very unfortunate that the very people who administrate the business of dentistry in the dental office had no association to provide resources for professional training or networking.
With the mounting changes in the dental offices today, this group knew it was time for a change. ODEA was formed to include all dental field administrative personnel such as dental office managers, receptionists, scheduling coordinators, financial coordinators, etc. Administrative personnel wear many hats and often are not provided with the educational tools to perform their duties in a professional manner that best represents the dentist, the office and the patient as needed.
ODEA has formed partnerships with the Oregon Dental Association in providing top-notch speakers and classes at the annual ODA Conference held in the spring in Portland, Oregon. Dental insurance carriers also recognize the need to partner with ODEA to present opportunities to bring the dental office and the carriers together and to get on the same page.
Dentists around the state support the mission of ODEA and welcome the expertise and resources ODEA provides to the members.
Members are able to network and learn about the latest HIPAA issues, technology advances, changing insurance industry standards, leadership skills, and also how to promote improved communication among the dental team.
Some of the tools ODEA uses to inform members of the latest advances in the dental office include quarterly newsletters, monthly Top Performance mailing, up to date website with members only area, resource articles and website links, job postings, networking and continuing education workshops during the annual ODA Conference and fall seminar. Study clubs have formed around the state providing even more opportunity for members to network, engage and support one another. ODEA has become a resource for locating personnel and for employment opportunities in the dental profession throughout the state as well.