Legislature(2001 - 2002)
03/23/2001 01:47 PM FIN
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE BILL NO. 81 An Act extending the termination date of the Board of Dental Examiners. REPRESENTATIVE HUGH FATE noted that under Title 8 of the Alaska Statutes, the Board of Dental Examiners would terminate on June 30, 2001. A report released by the Legislative Budget and Audit (LBA) Committee recommended that the Legislature extend the Board's date to June 30, 2005. He claimed that the regulation and licensing of qualified dentists and hygienists benefits the public's safety and welfare. HB 81 would accomplish that task. The legislation also addresses some of the concerns of the Dental Board of Examiners and the Alaska Dental Society. Representative Fate provided a sectional analysis of the bill and the changes made in the previous committee of referral. Section 1, Page 1, Line 6 - Extends the th termination date from June 30, 2005. Section 2, Page 2, Line 1 - Removes prophylactic, which is duplicate language to preventative, which is covered under preventative agent. Prophylactic is also confusing language because it is similar to other dental terms like prophylaxis. Section 3, Page 2, Line 11 - Same reason [Prophylactic was taken out of both locations because the Department of Law said if one went, they both had to.] Section 4, Page 2, Line 14 - Adds wording that says, the Governor, when making appointments, will consider licensed dentists nominated by the Alaska Dental Society and licensed dental hygienists nominated by the Dental Hygienists' Association. Section 5, Page 2, Line 22 - The president of the Board of Dental Examiners must be a licensed dentist under this chapter. Section 6, Page 3, Lines 5-13 - Allows a board authorized inspector to determine whether the owner or lessee of dental radiological equipment is in compliance with the inspection standards of the board, collect the appropriate fee and remit the fee to the board, and issues an inspection seal. The inspector would then remit the paperwork to the board and determine whether a seal is issued or not. Section 7, Page 3, Lines 16-18 - Makes a passing score on a clinical exam given by the Central Regional Dental Testing Service, Inc. an acceptable alternative to the Western Regional Examining Board examination as long as the exam was passed after January 1, 2001. Section 8, Page 4, Line 1 - Requires that the dentist be currently licensed in another state, with the same requirements as Alaska, in order avoid re-examination to practice in Alaska. Section 8, Page 4, Line 2,3 - Language that states a dentist could have taken a dental exam in one state and be practicing in another, and as long as the state they are licensed in has equivalent requirements to Alaska, the dentist can practice in Alaska. Section 9, Page 6, Line 2 - Licensed and practicing in the same state in order for them to practice in Alaska, if that state has equivalent requirements. Section 10 Page 6 Lines 27 to 31 - Expands the current Page 7 Lines I to 3 definition of Dentistry to included the American Dental Association's definition of dentistry which allows a dentist to evaluate, diagnose, treat, or perform preventive procedures relating to diseases, disorders, or conditions of the oral cavity, maxillofacial area, or adjacent and associated structures. Representative Davies asked what it would take to satisfy the Dental Board if the Governor had considered their list. Representative Fate explained that there is no obligation to choose from that list. Representative Fate requested that Section 5 be removed from the bill. Representative Harris asked why the House Labor and Commerce Committee had added that language. Representative Fate explained that at the time of that hearing, Catherine Reardon, Director, Division of Occupational Licensing, Department of Community and Economic Development, had voiced a concern about that language. Representative Fate noted that the Department's concerns had been addressed in other parts of the legislation. Representative Croft asked if there had been a controversy in the past with non-dentists on the Board. Representative Fate acknowledged that there are lay people on the Board. Representative Foster MOVED to delete Section 5, Page 2, Lines 19-22. There being NO OBJECTION, it was adopted. DEBRA STAUFFER, (TESTIFIED VIA TELECONFERENCE), PRESIDENT, ALASKA STATE DENTAL ASSOCIATION, ANCHORAGE, voiced full support for HB 81 and the changes made. DR. RICHARD GREGORIN, (TESTIFIED VIA TELECONFERENCE), ANCHORAGE, testified in support that the language placed in the bill in the House Labor and Commerce Committee remain in the bill. He reiterated that he did not agree with the change adopted by the House Finance Committee. Representative Fate noted that the amendment would not prevent the Dental Board to elect a dentist under regulations in the State of Alaska. He added that it was approved by the Administration and emphasized that it does not preclude a dentist from being elected to that seat. Dr. Gregorin disagreed, indicating that only a dentist should be holding that position. Representative Fate agreed and stated that the members of the board could choose to elect a person that is a dentist. Dr. Gregorin asked if it was possible that a non-dentist be elected to that seat. Representative Fate agreed that it was possible but was not probable. Dr. Gregorin commented that the Alaska Dental Society wanted to be on record indicating that the position only be held by a dentist. DR. GEORGE SCHAFFER, (TESTIFIED VIA TELECONFERENCE), ANCHORAGE, spoke to the amendment. He recommended that the Lines 19-21 remain. Representative Davies explained that language already exists in present statute. Dr. Schaffer voiced concern that a responsibility of the President of that Board is about communicating with other agencies outside of the State. He mentioned that he had concerns with anyone other than a dentist doing that work. He insisted that the requirement for communication must be held high and recommended that only a licensed dentist hold that position. Representative Croft noted that there would not be a non- dentist elected to the Board without the full support of all of the Board. Vice-Chair Bunde asked if the same requirements exist for the Board of Physicians. CATHERINE REARDON, DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF OCCUPATIONAL LICENSING, DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, advised that there is no requirement that specifies that any particular member be the Chair for any of the occupational licensing boards. DAVID LOGAN, DENTIST, PRESIDENT, ALASKA BOARD OF DENTAL EXAMINERS, JUNEAU, noted that the Board is in support of the version before the Committee and the recommended change. TAPE HFC 01 - 61, Side A Dr. Logan noted his support in preserving the current statute and the bill as before the Committee. Co-Chair Mulder referenced Section 7 and 8 and asked if there is "abuse" with dental assistants providing hygienists work. Dr. Logan responded that there isn't abuse, however, there is some misunderstanding of what is allowed under current statutes and confusion with use of the word "prophylactic". The Board is attempting to clear up any misinformation regarding the wording in the statutes. Co-Chair Mulder inquired if there exists a problem with the licensure issue. Dr. Logan reiterated that the Board is attempting to clean up the language and that the changes are small. Co-Chair Mulder noted the fiscal note. Representative Foster MOVED to report CS HB 81 (FIN) out of Committee with individual recommendations and with the accompanying fiscal note. There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered. CS HB 81 (FIN) was reported out of Committee with a "do pass" recommendation and with a fiscal note by Department of Community & Economic Development.