H.B. 2724 amends four of the statutes that are a part of the Dental Practices Act. The amendments relate to the practice of dental hygienists and unlicensed persons employed by a dentist, to supervision by a licensed dentist of licensed and unlicensed persons working under the direction of the dentist, to the practice of licensed dentists in certain settings as employees or under contract, and to the composition and selection of the Kansas Dental Board. The bill also amends a statute that concerns the liability of associations that investigate alleged dental malpractice and creates a new statute that concerns the education of dental hygienists.
An amendment to K.S.A. 1997 Supp. 65-1423 authorizes unlicensed individuals who are acting under the direct supervision of a dentist to polish the coronas of teeth as authorized by rules and regulations adopted by the Dental Board. The other amendment in subsection (d) is technical.
Amendments to K.S.A. 1997 Supp. 65-1465, a statute that generally relates to the practice of licensed dental hygienists, direct the Dental Board to designate by rules and regulations those procedures that may be performed by a dental hygienist under the direct supervision and the general supervision of a licensed dentist. The amendments add a new definition of "general supervision" to the statute under which a dentist who is licensed in Kansas is allowed to delegate services or procedures a licensed dental hygienist is authorized to perform to a hygienist to be performed when the dentist is not on the premises. Such delegation may only take place if the supervising dentist examines the patient at the time the procedure is performed or has examined the patient during the 12 months preceding the performance of the dental procedure. No hygienist may, under general supervision, diagnose a dental disease, prescribe any treatment or regimen for a dental disease or ailment, order or dispense medication, or perform any procedure that is irreversible or that involves the intentional cutting of hard or soft tissue. Other amendments delete the requirement that the administration of local anesthesia by a hygienist under the direct supervision of a dentist be performed only in the office of the dentist. The definition of indirect supervision is deleted from the statute since it is not used elsewhere in the statutes. The expiration date of subsection (e) is deleted from the subsection.
An amendment to K.S.A. 1997 Supp. 65-1466 deletes the expiration date of the statute which is July 1, 1998. Other amendments create a prohibition on licensed dentists who are providing care for the indigent permitting anyone who is not licensed to practice in an indigent health clinic, prohibit interference with the dentist's professional judgement and competent practice by indigent health clinics, and grant authority for the Dental Board to adopt rules and regulations to carry out the statutory provisions relating to employment or contracting to provide care to dentally indigent persons.
H.B. 2724 amends K.S.A. 1997 Supp. 74-1404 to increase the size of the Kansas Dental Board from five to nine members, including six licensed resident dentists, two licensed resident dental hygienists, and one public member. Members are to be appointed for four-year terms by the Governor, and of the six licensed dentists on the Board, one is to be appointed from each congressional district and two from the state at large. After the effective date of H.B. 2724, no member may be appointed for more than two consecutive four-year terms. No one is eligible to serve on the board who is concurrently an officer of the Kansas Dental Association or the Kansas Dental Hygienists Association.
H.B. 2724 creates a new statute that requires the State Board of Education and the State Board of Regents to report to the 1999 Legislature on plans for increasing the number of persons being trained as dental hygienists in Kansas.
The House Committee amended the provisions originally contained in H.B. 2725 into H.B. 2724. H.B. 2725 amends K.S.A. 1997 Supp. 65-1423 which is now Section 1 of H.B. 2724. H.B. 2725 which would allow unlicensed persons to provide portions of a dental prophylaxis was generally opposed by representatives of dental hygienists, academics from the Department of Periodontics and the School of Dentistry at the University of Missouri, and the Kansas Dental Hygienists Association. The bill was generally supported by individual dentists and by representatives of the Kansas Dental Association who expressed the belief there is a shortage of dental hygienists and for that reason, dental assistants should be authorized to perform certain procedures included in a dental prophylaxis. A subcommittee of the House Committee held additional meetings on the bills and recommended combining including the bills and the Committee amendments.
Following the Senate Committee hearing on H.B. 2724, a subcommittee was appointed to give further consideration to the bill. An equal number of representatives of the Kansas Dental Association and the Kansas Dental Hygienists Association met with the subcommittee to try to resolve the differences between the two groups. The Senate subcommittee recommended the compromise position reflected in the bill as amended by Senate Committee. Members of the Committee were made aware of concerns about the current Dental Board and the representation on the Board. The Senate Committee amendments respond to that concern. The Senate Committee amendments also incorporate the provisions of H.B. 2622 into H.B. 2724.
1. *Supplemental notes are prepared by the Legislative Research Department and do not express legislative intent. The supplemental note and fiscal note for this bill may be accessed on the Internet at http://www.ink.org/public/legislative/fulltext-bill.html.