STATEHOUSE (Jan. 25, 2018) — The House of Representatives advanced legislation co-authored by State Rep. Denny Zent (R-Angola) that would expand Hoosier’s access to dental health care in rural and underserved areas.
Zent said this legislation would enable a collaborative agreement to be established between a dentist and a dental hygienist, allowing dental hygienists to perform basic oral care procedures, like annual cleanings. Currently, the agreement would require a practicing dentist to be readily available to provide emergency communication and consultation with the dental hygienist during all procedures.
“By establishing these agreements between dentists and dental hygienists, more Hoosiers will be able to receive proper care, which is important for overall health,” said Zent, a retired endodontist. “This bill achieves a common goal by increasing access to oral health care.”
Zent’s proposal would require the patient to sign a consent form before a dental hygienist could provide services under an access practice agreement, keeping patients in control of their oral care. Both the Indiana Dental Association and Indiana Dental Hygienists’ Association testified in support of this bill.
House Bill 1116 now moves to the Senate for consideration. Visit iga.in.gov to learn more about this legislation.
State Rep. Denny Zent (R-Angola) represents House District 51, which
includes most of LaGrange and Steuben counties.
A high-resolution photo of Zent can be downloaded by clicking here.