North Carolina legislature moves forward with teledentistry bill

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper is expected to sign a bill that will establish regulatory standards for teledentistry in the state, the Carolina Journal reported July 21.

Senate Bill 146, which passed in the state's House July 14 and Senate July 21, would require teledentistry to include state-licensed dentists and dental hygienists, who would be able to provide care to patients under supervision of a dentist.

Additionally, the bill would allow dental hygienists the ability to administer local anesthetic to a patient while under the supervision of a licensed dentist and to practice dentistry at schools without the presence of a dentist.

These authorizations would expand care options throughout the state following an increase in teledentistry needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Jim Perry, R-Lenoir, has received support from local dentists and the Association of Dental Support Organizations.

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