Virginia General Assembly
Each year a multitude of policy issues that affect dentistry are considered and debated by the United States Congress and General Assembly of Virginia. These are issues that affect your livelihood in the dental profession as well as the patients that you serve. The Association’s legislative strength is proportional to the number of members involved. Strength lies in numbers! We encourage you to become involved in the Association’s legislative activities on a national and state level to ensure that legislators make decisions that are in the best interest of the profession and dental patients.
Virginia Dental Association – 2017 General Assembly Session
The General Assembly began their 2017 session on January 11th and the session ended “Sine Die” on February 25th. For information on the Virginia General Assembly, please click here.
Below are the specific items for which the VDA advocated. This is by no means an exhaustive list but some of the key items on which we worked. Thank you for your support!
• VDA requested bill (HB1474-Orrock) to ensure last year’s bill on remote supervision captured all agreed upon venues for remote supervision and addressed how patients with periodontal disease would be treated. PASSED UNANIMOUSLY and was signed and approved by the Governor. It will become effective on July 1, 2017.
• Legislation stemming from the NC Board of Dentistry/FTC case (HB 1566-Webert) as originally drafted would have among other concerning things, given the head of the Department of Health Professions (DHP) nearly veto power over any regulation. The bill has been AMENDED HEAVILY to not give DHP that power.
• We worked closely with Delegate (Dr.) Todd Pillion, who is a VDA member, on legislation (HB2167) that is an effort to address the tragic opioid abuse epidemic in Southwest, VA and other parts of the state. Among other things, this bill directs the Board of Dentistry to adopt regulations for the prescribing of opioids. PASSED & SIGNED BY THE GOVERNOR.
• HB 2225 (Head) was aimed at making sure, especially as more and more consumers are opting for high deductible plans, that hospitals and other healthcare practitioners, are not misclassifying bad debt as charity care. After explaining to the patron and a few others that VDA members are small business owners and that this policy would put an incredible and unnecessary burden on oral and maxillofacial surgeons, the bill was AMENDED HEAVILY to effectively apply to those entities that have a COPN.
• State Budget – it is also important to note that despite a budget shortfall north of $1B, reimbursement for the Smiles for Children program and the MOM program were SPARED ANY CUTS.