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Posted by John Jacob, a health communications writer and editor at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health

This month's meeting of the Public Health Council featured an informational presentation from the DPH Medical Director, the consideration of two Determination of Need requests from Massachusetts health care facilities. and a vote on proposed amendments to regulations governing fluoride application in dental care offices.

First, the Council voted to approve Determination of Need requests for transfer of ownership involving Lahey Clinic Hospital and Northeast Hospital Corporation, which will allow the two entities to form a merged nonprofit hospital corporation. 

The Council then voted to approve proposed amendments to regulations which will expand access to preventive dental services through the administration of fluoride varnish and similar topical fluorides. The newly-passed amendments would allow non-licensed individuals to administer fluoride varnish under the supervision of a licensed individual in professional dental care settings.

Finally, the Council heard an informational update from Dr. Lauren Smith, DPH Medical Director, on the status of the Department's sodium reduction initiatives.

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health communication writer and editor

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