In 2020, due to uncertainties about the COVID-19 virus, The American Board of Pediatric Dentistry (ABPD) made the difficult decision to cancel the Oral Clinical Examination (OCE). This cancellation postponed the board certification of over 400 pediatric dentists. In 2021, ABPD held the OCE in-person at an examination center in Raleigh, NC, and examined 784 candidates over a period of 6 days with 108 pediatric dentists volunteering as examiners. To limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus during and following the OCE, ABPD planned and implemented a health protocol for all participants. 

A group of dedicated examiners, Jennifer L. Cully, Anupama R. Tate, Tegwyn H. Brickhouse, Yin Zhang, and Carolyn Ann Kerin, proposed writing a manuscript detailing the protocol ABPD used for the examination week. The manuscript was submitted for publication and was published in the International Journal of Paediatric Dentistry1 in January 2023. Highlights of the article include that it was possible to safely administer a high-stakes oral examination during a pandemic and that participants agreed that safety protocols enacted by ABPD kept everyone safe.

1Cully JL, Tate AR, Brickhouse TH, Zhang Y, Kerins CA. Safety protocols at the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry Oral Clinical Examination during COVID-19. Int J Paediatr Dent. 2023;00:1-6. doi:10.1111/ipd.13045