On January 23, 1868, a bill was presented to the new Ontario legislature to regulate the practice of dentistry in Ontario. An Act Respecting Dentistry was passed on March 3, 1868 (almost 150 years ago), and full powers of licensing and regulating were placed in the hands of the dental profession.
The Act was the first legislation in the world to grant self-regulation to dentists. Prior to the Act, frauds and imposters with little-to-no medical knowledge and skills advertised themselves as dentists. In the absence of any standards and regulations, the public had no means to distinguish good dentistry from bad, and it put them in danger of injury, infection and even death.
On behalf of dentists across Canada, the ODA celebrates the anniversary of the Act, the formation of the ODA and 150 years of organized dentistry in Ontario. Thanks in large part to the work of one determined Ontarian, Barnabas Day, the ODA addressed an urgent need for trained, educated dental professionals, and took action to help bring Ontario’s dental practices out of the dark ages.
Today, the Ontario Dental Association represents more than 9,000 members, or nine out of 10 dentists in Ontario. Its mission is to provide innovative and inspired leadership to deliver exceptional value by:
- Promoting the highest standards of dental care and supporting our diverse membership in their pursuit of professional excellence and personal fulfillment
- Fostering a collaborative workplace environment which promotes creativity and personal growth while celebrating achievements
- Advocating with a unified voice for accessible and sustainable optimal oral health for all Ontarians