Under immediate supervision, assists a dentist or dental hygienist in the performance of his/her duties; cleans, sterilizes and arranges dental instruments; maintains records; performs related duties as required.
This entry level class is characterized by the ability to perform a variety of dental procedures which require knowledge of dental equipment, materials, procedures and terminology. This class works under close supervision with minimal latitude for the use of initiative and independent judgment. This class is distinguished from the Dental Assistant, Registered Lead in that the latter is responsible for more complex dental assistance activities.
Depending on assignment, duties may include, but are not limited to the following:
Prepares and arranges dental instruments, equipment and accessories on trays ready for use, sterilizes and cares for dental instruments; keeps sufficient amount of dental supplies available.
Takes, develops, and mounts dental x-rays, mixes and maintains supplies of developing and sterilizing solutions.
Presents information on dental health to the general public and other staff; prepares patients for treatment and examination; answers routine questions related to impending procedures or preventive dentistry techniques.
Assists a Dentist or Dental Hygienist in such chair-side functions as application of topical agents, removal of dental dressings and sutures, placement and removal of orthodontic separators and assisting in administration of sedation.
Demonstrates proper dental care, e.g., brushing, flossing, etc.; trains dental students and interns; restrains young children, when necessary and occasionally assists adults with disabilities.
Performs clerical activities related to dental clinic operation; files and sorts records, charts, and other materials; keeps records of patient appointments, results of examinations, dental work performed, and number of patients seen; keeps dental office and equipment, neat, clean and sanitary; seats patients and prepares them for dental work; assists in maintaining dental supply inventories; maintains records, scheduling client appointments.
Operates and maintains a mobile Dental Van: maintains and cleans all medical equipment within the van; operates, maintains and cleans interior and exterior of vehicle to include disposing of refuse and biohazard waste, sanitizing restroom, and maintaining waste system and holding tanks; performs safety check of vehicle; and operates onboard diesel generator.
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
Considerable knowledge of dental terminology; charting techniques; clinic operational procedures; principles and methods of sterilization of dental equipment, instruments, and supplies; uses of common dental instruments, equipment and material; dental hygiene and prophylaxis, dental x-ray techniques; mission and goals of public health function to which assigned; preventive dental care techniques; standard office methods, practices and procedures; office equipment operation; record maintenance systems.
Ability to interview clients to obtain dental health histories, and needs for services and attitudes toward dental treatment; communicate effectively both verbally and in writing; establish and maintain cooperative working relationships; demonstrate tact and diplomacy; refer clients to providers of health and social services; deal firmly and fairly with clients of various socio-economic backgrounds and temperaments; maintain confidentiality of information; recognize and respect limit of authority and responsibility.
Education and Experience
Education: High school diploma or GED
Supplemented by one (1) year of full-time work experience as a dental assistant that demonstrates possession of and competency in the requisite knowledge and abilities.
Completion of a required course on dental assistance may be substituted for six (6) months of the required experience.
Incumbents in the class are required to take x-rays and must be certified, prior to appointment by the State of California Board of Dental Examiners, Department of Consumer Affairs to operate oral x-ray equipment.
Possession of a Registered Dental Assistant (RDA) certificate from the Board of Dental Examiners, State of California.
Based on assignment, a California Driver’s License, Class C.
Physical Ability: Tasks involve the ability to exert moderate, though not constant physical effort, typically involving some combination of climbing and balancing, stooping, kneeling, crouching, and crawling, and which may involve some lifting, carrying, pushing and/or pulling of objects and materials of moderate weight (12-20 pounds). Sensory Requirements: Some tasks require visual, sound, depth and odor perception and discrimination. Some tasks require oral communications ability. Environmental Factors: Tasks may risk exposure to strong odors, toxic/poisonous agents, disease/pathogens, electric currents, and machinery.
Incumbents must be able to work in an environment, which may risk exposure to communicable diseases, chemical odors and bodily fluids. Incumbents may be exposed to and required to work with chemicals.
Positions allocated to this class may require bilingual skills.
Selectees, as a condition of employment, must sign a statement agreeing to comply with section 11166 of the California Penal Code relating to child abuse reporting.