This article originally appeared in Dental Assisting Digest e-newsletter. Subscribe to this informative monthly ENL designed specifically for the dental assistant here.
Navigating dental assisting requirements can be challenging because they vary from state to state. Luckily, the Dental Assisting National Board, Inc. (DANB) maintains several useful and convenient resources to keep assistants and other dental professionals up-to-date on the latest information. Read on to learn more.
DANB’s state-specific online resources
DANB recently updated the Meet State Requirements section of its website with the latest state dental assisting requirements. “DANB’s website has a wealth of information about the dental assisting requirements for each state, which can be especially useful when a dental assistant is looking to relocate and work in a different state,” says DANB Executive Director Cindy Durley, MEd, MBA.
Dental assistant Nancy W. has moved multiple times in her career, from Ohio to Tennessee and now to Texas. “I’ve worked in three states,” she explains. “Each state has such different laws and requirements. You need to do your homework. You really need to be aware of what duties you can legally perform and which ones you can’t.”
DANB’s search-by-state map features comprehensive information on each state’s requirements for dental assisting duties, including radiography procedures and expanded functions. Each state page lists the exam, education and training requirements by job title, as well as a link to that state’s dental board. Visitors can download and print a chart with these requirements, which include allowable and prohibited duties.
DANB also offers a state dental practice acts database, which has each state’s statutes, regulations, and administrative rules governing the practice of every member of the dental team. DANB created the database in collaboration with the American Association of Dental Boards so that anyone can easily locate the full dental practice act and dental board’s administrative rules and regulations for all dental team members in any state.
DANB’s 2018 state publications
In addition to updating its online resources to reflect the latest state dental assisting requirements, DANB also has issued its state publications for 2018.
DANB’s 2018 State Career Ladder Templates for Dental Assistants outlines the dental assisting requirements and career opportunities for dental assistants across all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Each state template contains information about recognized job titles; education, exam and training requirements; allowable functions; and required supervision levels.
DANB’s 2018 State Fact Booklet contains state-specific dental assisting information for all 50 states and the District of Columbia, including State Board of Dentistry contact information; accepted and/or required DANB examinations; general information on expanded functions; radiography requirements; and excerpts from the state dental practice act or state administrative rules pertaining to dental assistants.
Visit the State Publications section of DANB’s website to learn more about these resources, as well as to download order forms.
State recognition of DANB exams and certification
Although each state has its own requirements, DANB exams and certifications are recognized or required by 39 states, the District of Columbia, the US Air Force, and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Information about state recognition of DANB exams and certifications, as well as about state-specific exams administered by DANB, is also available online. Visit danb.org for more information.