97-S 0843A am
Approved Jul. 3, 1997


It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows

SECTION 1. Section 5-31.1-1 of the General Laws in Chapter 5-31.1 entitled "DENTISTS AND DENTAL HYGIENISTS" is hereby amended to read as follows:

5-31.1-1. Definitions. -- As used in this chapter:

(1) "Board" means the Rhode Island board of examiners in dentistry or any committee or subcommittee thereof.

(2) "Chief of the Division of Oral Health" means, the chief of the Division of Oral Health of the Rhode Island Department of Health who shall be a licensed dentist possessing a masters degree in public health or a certificate in public health from an accredited program.

(3) "Dental administrator" means the administrator of the Rhode Island board of examiners in dentistry.

(4) "Dental hygienist" means a person with a license to practice dental hygiene in this state under the provisions of this chapter.

(5) "Dentist" means a person with a license to practice dentistry in this state under the provisions of this chapter.

(6) "Department" means the Rhode Island department of health.

(7) "Director" means the director of the Rhode Island department of health.

(8) "Health care facility" means any institutional health service provider licensed pursuant to the provisions of chapter 23-17.

(9) "Health maintenance organization" means a public or private organization licensed pursuant to the provisions of chapter 23-17 or chapter 27-41.

(10) "Limited registrant" means a person holding a limited registration certificate pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.

(11) "Nonprofit medical services corporation" or "nonprofit hospital service corporation" or "nonprofit dental service corporation" means any corporation organized pursuant to chapter 27-19 or 27-20 of the general laws for the purpose of establishing, maintaining and operating a nonprofit medical, hospital, or dental service plan.

(12) "Peer review board" means any committee of a state or local or dental or dental hygiene, association or society, or a committee of any licensed health care facility, or the dental staff thereof, or any committee of a dental care foundation or health maintenance organization, or any staff committee or consultant of a hospital, medical, or dental service corporation, the function of which, or one of the functions of which is to evaluate and improve the quality of dental care rendered by providers of dental care service or to determine that dental care services rendered were professionally indicated or were performed in compliance with the applicable standard of care or that the cost for dental care rendered was considered reasonable by the providers of professional dental care services in the area and shall include a committee functioning as a utilization review committee under the provisions of public law 89-97 (medicare law) or as a professional standards review organization or statewide professional standards review council under the provisions of public law 92-603 (professional standards review organizations) or a similar committee or a committee of similar purpose, to evaluate or review the diagnosis or treatment of the performance or rendition of dental services which are performed under public dental programs of either state or federal design.

(13) "Person" means any individual, partnership, firm, corporation, association, trust or estate, state or political subdivision, or instrumentality of a state.

(14) "Practice of dental hygiene". Any person shall be said to be practicing dental hygiene within the meaning of this chapter who performs those services and procedures that a dental hygienist has been educated to perform and which services and procedures shall be, from time to time, specifically authorized by rules and regulations adopted by the board of examiners in dentistry. Nothing in this section shall be construed to authorize a licensed dental hygienist to perform the following: diagnosis and treatment planning, surgical procedures on hard or soft tissue, prescribe medication or administer injectables and/or general anesthesia. Further, a dental hygienist shall only be permitted to practice dental hygiene under the general supervision of a dentist duly licensed and registered in this state under the provisions of this chapter.

(15)(i) "Practice of dentistry". Any person shall be said to be practicing dentistry within the meaning of this chapter who uses or permits to be used, directly or indirectly, for profit or otherwise, for himself or herself or for any other person, in connection with his or her name, the word "dentist" or "dental surgeon", or the title "D.D.S." or "D.M.D." or any other words, letters, titles, or descriptive matter, personal or not, which directly or indirectly implies the practice of dentistry, or who owns, leases, maintains, operates a dental business in any office or other room or rooms where dental operations are performed, or directly or indirectly is manager, proprietor or conductor of the same; or who directly or indirectly informs the public in any language, orally, in writing, or in printing, or by drawings, demonstrations, specimens, signs, or pictures that he or she can perform or will attempt to perform dental operations of any kind; or who undertakes, by any means or method, gratuitously or for a salary, fee, money, or other reward paid or granted directly or indirectly to himself or herself or to any other person, to diagnose or profess to diagnose, or to treat or profess to treat, or to prescribe for or profess to prescribe for any of the lesions, diseases, disorders, or deficiencies of the human oral cavity, teeth, gums, maxilla or mandible, and/or adjacent associated structures; or who extracts human teeth, corrects malpositions thereof or of the jaws; or who, except on the written prescription of a duly licensed dentist and by the use of impressions or casts made by a duly licensed and practicing dentist, shall directly or indirectly by mail, carrier, personal agent, or by any other method, furnish, supply, construct, reproduce, or repair prosthetic dentures, bridges, appliances or other structures to be used and worn as substitutes for natural teeth; or who shall place such substitutes in the mouth and/or adjust the same; or who administers an anesthetic, either general or local in the course of any of the aforesaid dental procedures; or who engages in any of the practices included in the curricula of recognized dental colleges; provided, however, in order to administer any form of anesthesia, other than local, dentists must meet the requirements established by regulation of the board of examiners in dentistry, including payment of a permit fee.

(ii) The board shall promulgate regulations relating to anesthesia no later than July 1, 1988. {ADDSuch regulations shall be consistent with the american dental association guidelines for the use of conscious sedation, deep sedation and general anesthesia in dentistry. Neither the board nor any regulation promulgated by the board shall require additional licensing fees for the use of nitrous oxide by dentists. ADD} Prior to the adoption of said regulations dentists shall be permitted to administer anesthesia without restriction; provided, however, from the proceeds of any fees collected pursuant to the provisions of this chapter, there is hereby created a restricted receipts account which shall be used solely to pay for the administrative expenses incurred for expenses of administrating this chapter.

SECTION 2.This act shall take effect upon passage.

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