Texas State Board of Dental Examiners

The Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE) is responsible for regulating the practice of dentistry in Texas.  The TSBDE’s mission is to safeguard the dental health of Texas by ensuring that only qualified persons are licensed to provide dental care and ensuring that violators of laws and rules regulating dentistry are sanctioned appropriately. The TSBDE consists of 15 members: 8 dentists, 5 public members, and 2 dental hygienists. Board members serve staggered 6-year terms and are appointed by the Governor, who also appoints the presiding officer. The board elects a secretary each year. Two statutorily created committees provide assistance to the TSBDE in matters involving dental hygiene and dental laboratories — the Dental Hygiene Advisory Committee (DHAC) and the Dental Laboratory Certification Council (DLCC).

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The Texas State Board of Dental Examiners is not the only entity that regulates dental practice in Texas. Practicing dentistry in Texas requires compliance with a myriad of federal and state regulations. The resources included within this section are intended to help make regulatory compliance easier for dentists and their staff. Topics include patient privacy regulations, infection control regulations, and workplace safety regulations.

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Regulation Spotlight

New emergency preparedness are in effect which apply to all Texas dentists holding a sedation/anesthesia permit—Nitrous Oxide, Level 1, Level 2, Level 3, and Level 4.

Permit holders must create and maintain preoperative checklists, meet emergency preparedness standards, and meet requirements governing prevention and response to sedation/anesthesia emergencies.

All of these regulatory changes were required by the Sunset legislation relating to the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners—Senate Bill 313 by Senator Charles Schwertner (R–Georgetown).

The Texas Dental Association (TDA) worked extensively with the legislature and the dental board so that the regulations enhance public safety while also protecting the ability of dentists to continue administering sedation and anesthesia to their patients. TDA remains a strong advocate for both public safety and balanced regulations for Texas’ dentists.

For more information on the new requirements, please contact TDA Senior Policy Manager, Diane Rhodes, at 512-443-3675, diane@tda.org.

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Texas Legislation

The Texas Legislature is a bicameral system divided into two chambers: the Senate and the House of Representatives. Their duties are to pass all laws governing the state and submit all constitutional amendments to the voters of Texas. The Texas Legislature convenes in Austin for a regular session every 2 years on odd numbered years. A regular session is 140 days. The Governor may call additional 30-day sessions (special sessions) as he or she deems necessary. At such sessions, the legislature may consider only the subjects submitted by the Governor.

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DENPAC, the general purpose action committee of the Texas Dental Association, is a voluntary, non-profit, unincorporated group of dentists whose goal is to influence the nomination or election of state candidates who have demonstrated their concern for the preservation of dentistry as an independent profession, and for the dental health of the people of Texas.

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Council on Legislative and Regulatory Affairs

The Council on Legislative and Regulatory Affairs (CLRA) makes certain that the Texas Dental Association has an effective voice in the legislative process and state government. It works with the legislative and regulatory affairs staff and TDA contract legislative consultants to implement the Association’s legislative agenda and maintain positive working relationships with legislators, state officials, and allied professional groups.  In conjunction with component societies, the council informs members about governmental actions and mobilizes the TDA’s grassroots organization. The council also works with regulatory agencies to help ensure a competitive marketplace for dentists and quality dental care for all Texans.

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