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House of Delegates approves more succinct dental licensure-related policies

November 12, 2018

By Kimber Solana

Honolulu — The ADA House of Delegates Oct. 22 approved a resolution that outlines a more succinct policy on licensure-related matters in an effort to make its position on the subject clearer.

Res. 26H-2018 removed redundancies and lengthy explanations in 12 of the Association's dental licensure-related policies, simplifying its policies related to general principles for dental licensure, initial licensure and the curriculum integrated format clinical examination, among others.

The changes were made based on recommendations by the Council on Dental Education and Licensure, which conducted a two-year comprehensive review of the ADA's dental licensure-related policies.

According to the resolution, the ADA's position on general principles for dental licensure include opposing federal licensure and federal intervention in the state dental licensure system; supporting the elimination of patients in clinical licensure examination process; and opposing efforts of unlicensed and unqualified persons to gain a right to serve the public directly in the field of dental practice.

The resolution also urged states to accept the following common core of requirements for initial licensure:

  • Completion of a DDS or DMD degree from a university-based dental education program accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation.
  • Successful passage of the National Board of Dental Examination.
  • A determination of clinical competency for the beginning practitioner, which may include acceptance of clinical examination results from any clinical testing agency, or the Objective Structured Clinical Examination; graduation from CODA-accredited PGY-1 program; or completion of a standardized compilation of clinical competency assessments designed to demonstrate psychomotor skills and practice relevant patient care knowledge, skills and abilities, such as the California hybrid portfolio or a compendium of [clinical] competency.

Although in support of the elimination of patients in the clinical licensure examination process, the Association also outlined its position on the Curriculum Integrated Format clinical examination, which provides initial licensure candidates opportunities to successfully complete independent third-party clinical assessments on patients of record prior to graduation from a CODA-accredited program.

The Association included provisions on the CIF exam, including stating that the exam should only be performed on patients of record within an appropriately sequenced treatment plan and all portions of the exam must be available at multiple times within each institution during dental school, ensuring that patients receive appropriate care based on the treatment plan.

"The curriculum integrated format…should only be employed as a licensure examination until a nonpatient based licensure examination is developed that protects the public and meets psychometric standards," the policy states.

The resolution also addressed the Association's position on graduates of non-CODA accredited dental education programs; licensure by credentials; and licensure by credentials for dentists who are not graduates of CODA-accredited dental schools.