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Media Coverage Cites ADA’s Opposition To SmileDirectClub On Behalf Of Public

Forbes (10/18, Debter) states that “SmileDirectClub has faced intense opposition from the nation’s dentists and orthodontists since it was founded in 2014. The American Dental Association issued a resolution ‘strongly discouraging’ people from using the service and submitted complaints to the Federal Trade Commission and the Food & Drug Administration. One of the primary criticisms is that by cutting out orthodontists and dentists, it is providing an insufficient level of care. Industry groups have argued that the company takes shortcuts in its initial consultations, such as not requiring a dental exam, and does not provide the customer with direct access to a dentist or orthodontist, making it difficult for a customer to address questions or concerns. SmileDirectClub’s ‘disregard for consumer health and safety, on the one hand, and its persistent deceptive acts to drive high volume sales, on the other, together form the foundation of the company’s business model,’ reads the complaint submitted to the FTC.”

        Fortune (10/18) reports, “For SmileDirectClub shareholders, there hasn’t been much to smile about lately. Last month, the so-called teledentistry company went public, and got its proverbial teeth knocked in. Shares took another hit…after California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill that would add more regulations to the emerging sector in the state. The American Dental Association hailed the bill, the first of its kind in the nation, as a victory for consumers. It added legislators in Massachusetts have something similar in the works.”

        Barron’s (10/18, Liu) states, “The company was built on a disruptive brand of orthodontia that’s closer to shopping for sunglasses than visiting a dentist. Customers go to a SmileDirect store or take an at-home mold of their teeth. From there, the company creates a plastic aligner that customers can wear to bed. The American Dental Association has asked the Federal Trade Commission to ‘investigate false and misleading claims’ from SmileDirect.”

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