Legislative updates from the American Student Dental Association

May 2014


Lobby Day issues update 

More than 375 ASDA members attended National Dental Student Lobby Day, April 7-8 in Washington, D.C. Students received issue-specific training and learned how to lobby legislators. They networked with other students and practiced their new skills in small groups before heading to the Capitol to participate in more than 175 appointments with congressmen and their staff. Since these appointments, the following changes have been made to the bills below:

Engage update     

ASDA recently used the Engage Advocacy Alert system to distribute two action alerts related to the issues ASDA advocated for at National Dental Student Lobby Day:

From Washington   

Administration proposes significant revision to student loan repayment plans

President Obama's FY15 budget request proposes a variety of changes to student loan programs.Currently, participants repay their loans at a rate of 10 percent of their monthly discretionary income and it is capped at the amount they would be paying under a standard 10-year repayment plan. After 20 years of repayment, any remaining debt is forgiven.  


Why it affects you: The president's proposal eliminates the monthly payment cap and extends the repayment period to 25 years for those federal loan balances in excess of $30,000 with an overall loan limit of $138,500 for graduate and professional students. This will force dental students to pay more of an equitable share of their earnings as their incomes rise.  


From the April 2014 ADEA Washington Update
Representative Robin Kelly introduces legislation to remove barriers to care 

H.R. 4395 aims to amend Part B of Title III of the Public Health Service Act. This amendment would serve to improve oral health for lower income individuals by adding grants to support volunteer dental projects and by providing grants for public-private partnerships to improve oral health education and dental disease prevention.  


ASDA advocates for the improvement of dental care and its delivery to the public. Read more about barriers to care

From the States  

Ohio bill may change laws governing dental professionals

Senator Joe Uecker and Representative Terry Johnson introduced legislation designed to increase Ohioans' access to dental care. According to an April 16 article on Cleveland.com, Senate Bill 327 and House Bill 463 would increase the number of dental hygienists that can practice under the supervision of one dentist and allows those hygienists and other professionals to provide certain services when a dentist is not present.  


The bills also seek to strengthen the Ohio Dentist Loan Repayment Program (ODLRP) by doubling its current capacity. The ODLRP is a program that is working to help current dentists pay off loans attributed to their education in exchange for helping service an under-served population of the state.


Both bills have been introduced in their respective chambers and are awaiting hearings.

Maine legislature approves dental therapist bill 

Under LD 1230, dental therapists would work under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist. It requires dental therapists to have a supervising dentist check their work, such as examining x-rays. Supporters say it would allow hygienists to receive additional training to do as many as 53 procedures.  


The dental therapists would be required to take two years of college-level classes and have 2,000 hours of training with a licensed dentist, and pass an examination by the Maine Board of Dental Examiners. They could then perform prophylaxes, restorations and extractions but not root canals.


Local colleges could start offering dental therapist classes as early as 2015, the bill's supporters said.


From Dr. Bicuspid (April 21, 2014)  

State licensure spotlight: Minnesota    
Dr. Katie Divine, Minnesota '13, 2012-13 editor-in-chief


If negative degree winter temperatures, hot humid summers and deep-fried food on a stick sounds like your thing, then you probably already live in Minnesota. For anyone considering making Minnesota their state of practice, here are a few things you should know about obtaining a dental license as a new dentist in the "North Star State."  


Minnesota has several paths for licensure, all of which require you to do the following:

  • Graduate with a DDS or DMD degree from a CODA-accredited dental school
  • Pass the Minnesota Jurisprudence Exam within five years of application
  • Pass NBDE Part I and Part II within five years of application
  • Complete the application for licensure including a signed affidavit, testimonials by licensed dentists, notarized copies of your diploma and other important documents
  • Current CPR-certification through the American Heart Association
  • Pay an initial application fee of $154, plus a secondary fee to be assessed after submitting application based on your birthday and the biannual licensing cycle
Read more about the final steps for licensure in Minnesota.
Stephanie Follett, governance and leadership coordinator
Stephanie@ASDAnet.org | 312-440-2490
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