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Surcharges necessary to cover PPE costs, Texas dentists say

Texas dentists are adding surcharges of $10 to $30 to patient bills to cover the cost of the sanitation and personal protective equipment needed to safely reopen their practices, according to local NBC affiliate WOAI-TV.

Many Texas dentists maintain that they need the surcharges to pay for PPE and that they're within their rights to implement them despite criticism from patients.

"The governor did actually say you are allowed to charge a nominal fee to recover some of these extra costs that we are pushing onto you," Mark Porter, DDS, told WOAI-TV.

Dr. Porter, who is charging patients an additional $10 per visit, said that his surcharges are not meant to help the practice recover from its eight-week closure; he considers that time period lost. The fee is to pay for the additional PPE he purchased amid the pandemic, he said.

The American Dental Association and Texas State Board of Dental Examiners support dentists' decision to include PPE surcharges as long as patients are notified of the fee.

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