June 05, 2020
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine) participated in a teleconference with the Maine Dental Association to discuss coronavirus-related challenges facing Maine’s dentists. Topics of discussion on today’s call included the economic challenges facing many dental practices, the importance of the Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act, legislation introduced by Senator King which was signed into law today, best practices to safely reopen dental offices, and concerns regarding insufficient personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect dentists, dental hygienists, and other members of the staff.
“Maine’s dentists are critical to the long-term health of our people – but they are very exposed to the potential transmission of this health threat through their day-to-day workload,” said Senator King. “The nature of dental work is extremely high risk during a respiratory pandemic, so it is critical to strike a balance that allows dentists to care for their patients while ensuring the long-term viability of their businesses by keeping them protected. The dentists I spoke to today told me loud and clear that PPE shortages are among the biggest challenges they face, which is why I’m going to continue pushing the Administration to step up and use the Defense Production Act to manufacture this lifesaving equipment as quickly as possible.”
Throughout the pandemic, Senator King has engaged with Maine people from all walks of life and helpful organizations to address questions surrounding the coronavirus pandemic and identify remaining work to be done. He recently held a tele-town hall, inviting all Maine people to call in toll-free, to listen and respond to questions about coronavirus response efforts. Since the Senate passed the CARES Act, he has participated in teleconferences and phone calls with:
· Maine healthcare advocates, such as Protect our Care.
· Maine educators, including the 16 Maine 2020 County Teachers of the Year, Maine Jump$tart Coalition’s two Finance Educators of the Year, MLTI Virtual Student Conference, and civics and history teachers from schools across Maine.
· Maine business leaders, including members of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce, the New England Council, 120 of Portland’s small business owners and 500 Maine employees of Sun Life.
· Maine seniors in a call hosted by AARP Maine
· Maine democracy-focused organizations, such as the Maine League of Women Voters.