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Continuing Education

18VAC60-21-250. Requirements for continuing education.

A. A dentist shall complete a minimum of 15 hours of continuing education, which meets the requirements for content, sponsorship, and documentation set out in this section, for each annual renewal of licensure except for the first renewal following initial licensure and for any renewal of a restricted volunteer license.

1. All renewal applicants shall attest that they have read and understand and will remain current with the laws and regulations governing the practice of dentistry and dental hygiene in Virginia.

2. A dentist shall maintain current training certification in basic cardiopulmonary resuscitation with hands-on airway training for health care providers or basic life support unless he is required by 18VAC60-21-290 or 18VAC60-21-300 to hold current certification in advanced life support with hands-on simulated airway and megacode training for health care providers.

3. A dentist who administers or monitors patients under general anesthesia, deep sedation, or moderate sedation shall complete four hours every two years of approved continuing education directly related to administration and monitoring of such anesthesia or sedation as part of the hours required for licensure renewal.

4. Continuing education hours in excess of the number required for renewal may be transferred or credited to the next renewal year for a total of not more than 15 hours.

5. Up to two hours of the 15 hours required for annual renewal may be satisfied through delivery of dental services, without compensation, to low-income individuals receiving health services through a local health department or a free clinic organized in whole or primarily for the delivery of those services. One hour of continuing education may be credited for three hours of providing such volunteer services, as documented by the health department or free clinic.

B. To be accepted for license renewal, continuing education programs shall be directly relevant to the treatment and care of patients and shall be:

1. Clinical courses in dentistry and dental hygiene; or

2. Nonclinical subjects that relate to the skills necessary to provide dental or dental hygiene services and are supportive of clinical services (i.e., patient management, legal and ethical responsibilities, and stress management). Courses not acceptable for the purpose of this subsection include estate planning, financial planning, investments, business management, marketing, and personal health.

C. Continuing education credit may be earned for verifiable attendance at or participation in any course, to include audio and video presentations, that meets the requirements in subsection B of this section and is given by one of the following sponsors:

1. The American Dental Association and the National Dental Association, their constituent and component/branch associations, and approved continuing education providers;

2. The American Dental Hygienists' Association and the National Dental Hygienists Association, and their constituent and component/branch associations;

3. The American Dental Assisting Association and its constituent and component/branch associations;

4. The American Dental Association specialty organizations and their constituent and component/branch associations;

5. A provider accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education for Category 1 credits;

6. The Academy of General Dentistry, its constituent and component/branch associations, and approved continuing education providers;

7. A college or university that is accredited by an accrediting agency approved by the U.S. Department of Education or a hospital or health care institution accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations;

8. The American Heart Association, the American Red Cross, the American Safety and Health Institute, and the American Cancer Society;

9. A medical school accredited by the American Medical Association's Liaison Committee for Medical Education;

10. A dental, dental hygiene, or dental assisting program or advanced dental education program accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association;

11. State or federal government agencies (i.e., military dental division, Veteran's Administration, etc.);

12. The Commonwealth Dental Hygienists' Society;

13. The MCV Orthodontic Education and Research Foundation;

14. The Dental Assisting National Board and its affiliate, the Dental Auxiliary Learning and Education Foundation; or

15. A regional testing agency (i.e., Central Regional Dental Testing Service, Northeast Regional Board of Dental Examiners, Southern Regional Testing Agency, Council of Interstate Testing Agencies, or Western Regional Examining Board) when serving as an examiner.

D. The board may grant an exemption for all or part of the continuing education requirements due to circumstances beyond the control of the licensee, such as temporary disability, mandatory military service, or officially declared disasters. A written request with supporting documents must be submitted prior to renewal of the license.

E. The board may grant an extension for up to one year for completion of continuing education upon written request with an explanation to the board prior to the renewal date.

F. A licensee is required to verify compliance with the continuing education requirements in his annual license renewal. Following the renewal period, the board may conduct an audit of licensees to verify compliance. Licensees selected for audit must provide original documents certifying that they have fulfilled their continuing education requirements by the deadline date as specified by the board.

G. All licensees are required to maintain original documents verifying the date and subject of the program or activity, the sponsor, and the amount of time earned. Documentation shall be maintained for a period of four years following renewal.

H. A licensee who has allowed his license to lapse, or who has had his license suspended or revoked, shall submit evidence of completion of continuing education equal to the requirements for the number of years in which his license has not been active, not to exceed a total of 45 hours. Of the required hours, at least 15 must be earned in the most recent 12 months and the remainder within the 36 months preceding an application for reinstatement.

I. Continuing education hours required by board order shall not be used to satisfy the continuing education requirement for license renewal or reinstatement.

J. Failure to comply with continuing education requirements may subject the licensee to disciplinary action by the board.

Statutory Authority

§§ 54.1-2400 and 54.1-2709.5 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 32, Issue 05, eff. December 2, 2015; amended, Virginia Register Volume 33, Issue 09, eff. February 10, 2017; Volume 35, Issue 05, eff. November 28, 2018.

Virginia Board of Dentistry | Contact the Board
Jamie C. Sacksteder, Executive Director
Margaret F. Lemaster, RDH, Board President