Samson Liu, DDS, MAGD, MBA
A strong indicator of achieving educational mastery and leadership in dentistry is earning a Fellowship from the Academy of General Dentistry (FAGD) through the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD). This designation is one of the most distinguished and respected accolades in the dental industry. Over 300 dentists in North America earned an FAGD in 2015. Fellows of the Academy of General Dentistry excel in continuing education, going above and beyond in learning new techniques and special issues in dentistry. It is a distinction that recognizes hard-working dentists for their dedication to their profession and to their patients.
To earn an FAGD, dentists are required to complete 500 approved continuing education credits, with at least 350 of those credits coming from attended courses. They must also successfully complete the Fellowship Examination and be an active member of the AGD. Dentists who meet all these requirements are awarded the FAGD at a Convocation Ceremony, held at the AGD Annual Meeting.
While the requirements of the FAGD may seem daunting, Heartland Dental offers an unparalleled opportunity for supported dentists to achieve the necessary qualifications. At the beginning of 2016, Heartland Dental rolled out the Doctor Mastery Program. This five-year program is open to all Heartland Dental supported dentists and consists of clinical training conducted by leading clinicians in the field. Not only does the program provide the opportunity for supported dentists to grow their practices and achieve dental mastery, the training is also specially designed to help supported dentists meet the AGD’s requirements for earning FAGD designation. Currently 420 supported dentists have joined the program, with more joining each month.
The continuing education courses offered as part of the program are AGD-approved and will count toward the 500 continuing education credits necessary for earning an FAGD. Supported dentists who complete the program and the requirements for the Fellowship will be recognized as leaders in the dental industry. Dedication to education, leadership and clinical mastery are characteristics of those who hold the FAGD distinction, and the Doctor Mastery Program is designed to help supported dentists work toward perfecting those exact traits.
Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting with the AGD to discuss how FAGD achievement fits into the Doctor Mastery Program. We are excited to continually help participating dentists get more involved with the AGD as they work towards FAGD designation. In this meeting, I was joined by Dr. Brady Morehead, a supported dentist at Hollywood Park Dental in San Antonio and a Master of the Academy of General Dentistry (MAGD). Dr. Morehead is also an FAGD course instructor.
“Obtaining my FAGD and MAGD was a great achievement for myself and has positively impacted my level of care. As an instructor, it has been an honor and pleasure to help other dentists do the same. Now with the implementation of the Doctor Mastery Program, even more dentists will have the opportunity to get involved with the AGD,” said Dr. Morehead.
The FAGD is an honorable award that helps distinguish a dentist as a true leader in their profession. Through the Doctor Mastery Program, supported doctors can take their skills in dentistry to the next level, and be recognized for it through the achievement of an FAGD. Through initiatives like this, Heartland Dental is not only committed to providing world-class opportunities for supported dentists, but also to helping advance the dental industry as a whole.