Independent Practice

It’s the Law

 

Colorado Enacts New Laws Regarding Dental Practice Ownership

March 20, 2008, Governor Bill Ritter, Jr. signed House Bill 08-1134 into law effective August 5, 2008. A portion of this bill concerns the disclosure of the ownership of a practice that provides dental care to patients. This law will directly affect all dental or dental hygiene practices in Colorado. Specifically, this new law requires that certain information regarding the ownership of the dental or hygiene practice be available upon request at the reception desk of the practice during normal business hours. The availability of this information is a mandatory requirement, effective August 5, 2008. Another important provision in this legislation is that it allows an heir to the dentist or dental hygienist to serve as a proprietor of the deceased’s practice for up to one year after their death, regardless of whether the heir is licensed to practice. And that upon good cause shown, may petition the Board for an extension of the temporary ownership period by up to an additional twelve months, if necessary, to allow them sufficient time to sell or otherwise dispose of the practice. Other qualified groups or individuals under the following criteria:

  • Public and nonprofit community health clinics.
  • Adults who are homebound.
  • Students or enrollees of nursery schools and day care programs and their siblings under 18 years of age, Job Corps and similar employment training facilities, primary and secondary schools, including private schools and public charter schools, and persons entitled to benefits under the Women, Infants and Children Program.
  • Patients in hospitals, medical clinics, medical offices or offices operated or staffed by nurse practitioners, physician assistants or midwives.
  • Patients whose income is less than the federal poverty level.
  • Other populations that the Oregon Board of Dentistry determines are underserved or lack access to dental hygiene services.

At least once each calendar year, an expanded practice dental hygienist shall refer each patient or resident to a dentist who is available to treat the patient or resident.

The practice of dentistry and dental hygiene in the state of Colorado is declared to affect the public health, safety, and welfare and to be subject to regulation and control in the public interest. It is further declared to be a matter of public interest and concern that the dental profession merit and receive the confidence of the public and that only qualified dentists and dental hygienists be permitted to practice dentistry or dental hygiene in this state. It is the purpose of this article to promote the public health, safety, and welfare by regulating the practice of dentistry and dental hygiene and to ensure that no one shall practice dentistry or dental hygiene without qualifying under this article. The provisions of this article relating to licensure by credentials are not intended to reduce competition or restrain trade with respect to the oral health needs of the public.

My sensitive teeth have never liked any sort of cleaning or dental work, but Vicky made the whole process enjoyable.    . . . my teeth are happy! I appreciated and enjoyed learning about how to take care of my teeth and WHY. . . more than just brush-n-floss. . . and Vicky was able to explain it in an understandable way. Thanks!

Eric Powers

Smithtown, NQ

CO Revised Statutes for Dentists and Dental Hygienists

DISCLAIMER: The Colorado Revised Statutes are available on the internet for public use by the Committee on Legal Services of the Colorado General Assembly through a contractual arrangement with the LexisNexis Group.