Saskatchewan Dental Hygienists' Association, 1978-

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Saskatchewan Dental Hygienists' Association, 1978-

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The Saskatchewan Dental Hygienists' Association (SDHA) was established in July 1970, when its draft constitution and bylaws were approved by the Canadian Dental Hygienists' Association. The first meeting of the SDHA was held in November 1970 with ten members in attendance. The SDHA was incorporated as a non-profit corporation in Saskatchewan on March 1, 1978. On March 13, 1998, it was continued as a professional association under the provisions of the Dental Disciplines Act, which allowed it to become a self-regulating organization.

The SDHA aims to cultivate, promote and sustain the art and science of dental hygiene; maintain and honor the interests of the profession and contribute toward the health of the public. Dental hygienists are registered and certified health professionals who specialize in preventing oral health problems and diseases. They work to prevent tooth, gum and mouth diseases and injuries that can affect overall health. Most dental hygienists are employed in dental offices but others work in community health centres; educational facilities; health care institutions and private industry. Membership in the SDHA is open to dental hygienists and other persons interested in membership as outlined in the Association's bylaws. The classes of membership offered are active; life; associate; student; and honorary.

The SDHA is responsible for licensing and regulating all dental hygienists in the province. The SDHA also works toward the advancement of dental hygiene in Saskatchewan by submitting briefs to the provincial government; providing continuing education programs; hosting conferences; and sponsoring awards for graduates of dental hygiene programs at the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology (SIAST).

The SDHA is governed by a Council elected by the membership to provide leadership and manage the Association's business and regulatory affairs. The Registrar-Executive Director manages the day-to-day administrative affairs. Other officers include a president; vice-president; past president; secretary and treasurer. Council appoints representatives of the SDHA to the Canadian Dental Hygienists' Association; SIAST Dental Hygiene Program Advisory Committee and National Dental Hygiene Certification Board. The SDHA currently (2010) represents 450 dental hygienists in the province. The central office is located in Saskatoon.

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