Pennsylvania Dental Journal March April 2017 - Page 10

G ove r n men t Re lat ions g AMENDED legislation to prohibit dental hygienists from opening private independent private practices, while requiring additional training and education for those hygienists practicing independently in public settings. g TRANSFORMED the dental profession by convincing the legislature to legitimize the practice of expanded function dental assistants, increasing dental office productivity. g STOPPED the legislature from passing a bill prohibiting dentists from administering general anesthesia and deep sedation in their offices. To learn more about current legislative efforts visit the Government Relations page at SPECIAL NOTICE TO LICENSEES REGARDING NEW CE REQUIREMENT FOR OPIOID PRESCRIBERS AND DISPENSERS During the waning days of 2016, the General Assembly passed SB 1202, legislation that requires the following of health care providers: • Applicants for an initial license must obtain at least two hours of education in pain management or identification of addiction, and at least two hours of education in the practice of prescribing or dispensing opioids. They may complete this requirement as part of their professional degree educational program or from a continuing education (CE) program taken within 12 months of obtaining an initial license or certificate. • Dispenses and prescribes applying to renew their licenses or certificates must complete at least two hours of CE in pain management, identification of addition or the practice of prescribing or dispensing of opioids as a portion of the total CE required for biennial renewal. Governor Wolf signed SB 1202, now Act 124, into law on November 2. The law became effective on January 1. In late December, the State Board of Dentistry (SBOD), in conjunction with the Department of Health, provided advance notice to all licensees who are considered “prescribers” or “dispensers” under section 3 of the Achieving Better Care by Monitoring All Prescriptions Program (ABC-MAP) Act (35 P.S. § 872.3), as amended, that effective January 1, 2017, all licensees applying for the renewal of a license issued by the SBOD who are considered prescribers or dispensers will be required to complete at least 2 hours of Board-approved continuing education in pain management, identification of addiction or 8 MA R CH / A P R I L 2017 | P EN N S YLVA N IA D EN TA L J O UR N A L the practices of prescribing or dispensing of opioids as a condition of renewal. Please note that the continuing education requirements of Act 124 will not be necessary in order to renew licenses in 2017. However, dentists will be required to complete at least two hours of SBOD-approved continuing education in pain management, identification of addiction or the practices of prescribing or dispensing of opioids as a condition of renewal in 2019. PDA has obtained clarification from the Department of State’s Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs (BPOA) about exemptions in Act 124 for health care providers who do not prescribe controlled substances. BPOA confirmed that there are two exemptions for licensees: 1. Licensees who are exempt from the federal Drug Enforcement Agency’s (DEA) requirements for a registration number. 2. Licensees who do not use the registration number of another person or entity, as permitted by law, to prescribe controlled substances in any manner. The continuing education (CE) requirement does apply to all licensees who have a current DEA registration or use another DEA number (as permitted by law) to prescribe controlled substances. Licensing boards are tasked with working with the Department of State to approve courses for pain management, identification of addiction, and the practices of prescribing and dispensing of opioids. More information regarding this requirement will be posted on the State Board of Dentistry’s website when it is available. Five Reasons to Support PADPAC 1) PADPAC is one of the largest bi-partisan health care political action committees in Pennsylvania. If PDA members do not participate in advocacy efforts through PADPAC, we risk ceding control of legislative debates to other groups. PDA members must ensure their professional voice is heard in Harrisburg! 2) PADPAC contributions directly support electing candidates who support a healthy practice environment for dentists in Pennsylvania. 3) There are many new members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly who are unfamiliar with PDA’s issues. PADPAC helps us build relationships with these new lawmakers, allowing us to educate them about the association, the