Collect Letter of Support for Advocacy
The Missouri Dental Hygienists’ Association presented facts and testimony in support of local anesthetic (LA) under general supervision at the last Missouri Dental Board meeting in October 2022. MDHA requested the MDB to consider allowing a regulatory change to lift supervision barriers that will increase access to care for Missouri residents. Missouri dental hygienists are currently unable to provide adequate pain control for patients when the dentist is out of the office since LA must be given when a dentist is present. Also, with teledentistry emerging, we need a way to allow RDHs to provide comfortable care to residents outside of the dental office. Missouri dental hygienists are trained and educated in medical emergencies, including Basic Life Support, and pain management in six of our active Missouri dental hygiene programs. Local anesthetic is currently the only service within the scope of practice of a Missouri dental hygienist that is NOT included under general supervision. MDHA fully supports this action to lift supervision for the benefit of the patient and has requested the MDB to deliberate on this topic. The next MDB meeting is scheduled on January 20, 2023 where MDHA is hoping the MDB will come to a decision.
Until then, we need to be proactive and collect as many letters of support from MO dentists as possible. That includes anyone with a DDS behind their name, including specialists and educators! Since you have established a relationship with dentists in your network, we are asking for YOUR HELP to advance the profession of dental hygiene in the state of Missouri. To the right, we have provided facts and sample letters for you to review and share with dentists in your area. If your dentist has any questions, please send them to the legislative council chairperson’s email, below.
Karmen Vaughn, RDH, BSDH
Legislative Council Chairperson