Did you know that cases or complaints filed before the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE) undergo a complicated process? The steps that must be followed by every professional dentist in the state of Texas are quite complex. This is the reason why it is highly recommended for every professional dentist or dental hygienist to hire the right dental defense attorney in Texas. Doing so will help him prevent the Board from suspending or revoking his license.
Unfortunately, for a professional dental assistant named Ronald, he failed to hire the services of a lawyer when a disciplinary case was filed against him. In fact, the dentist involved waived representation by counsel, informal conference and notice and hearing. All these resulted to the revocation of his dental license. As a result, he lost the right to practice dentistry in the state of Texas.
The case filed before the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE) expressly provided the following allegations:
On or about August 8, 2007, the dentist engaged in dishonorable conduct, specifically, the dentist was arrested for driving while intoxicated. On or about February 22, 2008, the dentist was convicted of a class B misdemeanor.
During the time period from July 17, 2008 through October 17, 2008, the dentist fell below the minimum standard of care in the treatment of patient R.R, specifically, the dentist failed to refer patient R.R, to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon for evaluation of a nerve injury compilation.
All these establish the undeniable fact that the professional dentist violated the certain rules and regulations promulgated by the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE). Aside from this, his acts were also in violation of the Texas Administrative Code, which warrant the imposition of penalties and fines. Ronald was found guilty by the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE), which ordered for the revocation of his license with finality.
If you have received a letter from the Texas SBDE for use of drugs/alcohol or any other offense, it is best to consult an experienced Texas Dental license Defense Attorney who can guide you on the steps you need to take to protect your dental license. Call Attorney Yong J. An at 832 428 5679.
The Texas Administrative Code (Chapter 108, Subchapter A RULE §108.8) expressly provides that:
(a) The term dental records includes, but is not limited to: identification of the practitioner providing treatment; medical and dental history; limited physical examination; oral pathology examination; radiographs; dental and periodontal charting; diagnoses made; treatment plans; informed consent statements or confirmations; study models, casts, molds, and impressions, if applicable; cephalometric diagrams; narcotic drugs, dangerous drugs, controlled substances dispensed, administered or prescribed; anesthesia records; pathology and medical laboratory reports; progress and completion notes; materials used; dental laboratory prescriptions; billing and payment records; appointment records; consultations and recommended referrals; and post treatment recommendations.
(b) A Texas dental licensee practicing dentistry in Texas shall make, maintain, and keep adequate dental records for and upon each dental patient for reference, identification, and protection of the patient and the dentist. Records shall be kept for a period of not less than five years from the last date of treatment by the dentist. If a patient was younger than 18 years of age when last treated by the dentist, the records shall be maintained by the dentist until the patient reaches age 21 or for five years from the date of last treatment, whichever is longer. Dentists shall retain records for a longer period of time when mandated by other federal or state statute or regulation. Records must include documentation of the following:
(1) Patients name;
(2) Date of visit;
(3) Reason for visit;
(4) Vital signs, including but not limited to blood pressure and heart rate when applicable in accordance with §108.7 of this title.
(5) If not recorded, an explanation why vital signs were not obtained.
(c) Further, records must include documentation of the following when services are rendered:
(1) Written review of medical history and limited physical evaluation;
(2) Findings and charting of clinical and radiographic oral examination:
(A) Documentation of radiographs taken and findings deduced from them, including radiograph films or digital reproductions.
(B) Use of radiographs, at a minimum, should be in accordance with ADA guidelines.
(C) Documentation of the findings of a tactile and visual examination of the soft and hard tissues of the oral cavity;
(4) Treatment plan, recommendation, and options;
(5) Treatment provided;
(6) Medication and dosages given to patient;
(8) Written informed consent that meets the provisions of §108.7(7) of this title;
(9) The dispensing, administering, or prescribing of all medications to or for a dental patient shall be made a part of such patient’s dental record. The entry in the patient’s dental record shall be in addition to any record keeping requirements of the DPS or DEA prescription programs;
(10) All records pertaining to Controlled Substances and Dangerous Drugs shall be maintained in accordance with the Texas Controlled Substances Act;
(11) Confirmable identification of provider dentist, and confirmable identification of person making record entries if different from provider dentist;
(12) When any of the items in paragraphs (1) – (11) of this subsection are not indicated, the record must include an explanation why the item is not recorded.
(d) Dental records are the sole property of the dentist who performs the dental service. However, ownership of original dental records may be transferred as provided in this section. Copies of dental records shall be made available to a dental patient in accordance with this section.
(e) A dentist who leaves a location or practice, whether by retirement, sale, transfer, termination of employment or otherwise, shall maintain all dental records belonging to him or her, make a written transfer of records to the succeeding dentist, or make a written agreement for the maintenance of records.
(1) A dentist who continues to maintain the dental records belonging to him or her shall maintain the dental records in accordance with the laws of the State of Texas and this chapter.
(2) A dentist who enters into a written transfer of records agreement shall notify the State Board of Dental Examiners in writing within fifteen (15) days of a records transfer agreement. The notification shall include, at a minimum, the full names of the dentists involved in the agreement, include the locations involved in the agreement, and specifically identify what records are involved in the agreement. The agreement shall transfer ownership of the records. A transfer of records agreement may be made by agreement at any time in an employment or other working relationship between a dentist and another entity. Such transfer of records may apply to all or any part of the dental records generated in the course of the relationship, including future dental records. A dentist who assumes ownership of the records pursuant to this paragraph shall maintain the records in a manner consistent with this section and is responsible for complying with subsections (f) and (g) of this section.
(3) A dentist who enters into a records maintenance agreement shall notify the State Board of Dental Examiners within fifteen (15) days of such event. The notification shall include the full names of the dentists involved in the agreement, the locations involved in the agreement, and shall identify what records are involved in the agreement. A maintenance agreement shall not transfer ownership of the dental records, but shall require that the dental records be maintained in accordance with the laws of the State of Texas and the Rules of the State Board of Dental Examiners. The agreement shall require that the dentist(s) performing the dental service(s) recorded in the records have access to and control of the records for purposes of copying and recording. The dentist transferring the records in a records maintenance agreement shall maintain a copy of the records involved in the records maintenance agreement. Such an agreement may be made by written agreement by the parties at any time in an employment or other working relationship between a dentist and another entity. A records maintenance agreement may apply to all or any part of the dental records generated in the course of the relationship, including future dental records.
(f) Dental records shall be made available for inspection and reproduction on demand by the officers, agents, or employees of the State Board of Dental Examiners. The patient’s privilege against disclosure does not apply to the Board in a disciplinary investigation or proceeding under the Dental Practice Act. Copies of dental records submitted to the Board on demand of the officers, agents, or employees of the Board shall be legible and all copies of dental x-rays shall be of diagnostic quality. Non-diagnostic quality copies of dental x-rays and illegible copies of patient records submitted to the Board shall not fulfill the requirements of this section.
(g) A dentist shall furnish copies of dental records to a patient who requests his or her dental records. At the patient’s option, the copies may be submitted to the patient directly or to another Texas dental licensee who will provide treatment to the patient. Requested copies, including radiographs, shall be furnished within 30 days of the date of the request. The copies may be withheld until copying costs have been paid. Records shall not be withheld based on a past due account for dental care or treatment previously rendered to the patient. Copies of dental records submitted in accordance with a request under this section shall be legible and all copies of dental x-rays shall be of diagnostic quality. Non-diagnostic quality copies of dental x-rays shall not fulfill the requirements of this section.
(1) A dentist providing copies of patient dental records is entitled to a reasonable fee for copying which shall be no more than $25 for the first 20 pages and $0.15 per page for every copy thereafter.
(2) Fees for radiographs, which if copied by an radiograph duplicating service, may be equal to actual cost verified by invoice.
(3) Reasonable costs for radiographs duplicated by means other than by a radiograph duplicating service shall not exceed the following charges:
(A) a full mouth radiograph series: $15.00;
(B) a panoramic radiograph: $15.00;
(C) a lateral cephalometric radiograph: $15.00;
(D) a single extra-oral radiograph: $5.00;
(E) a single intra-oral radiograph: $5.00.
(4) State agencies and institutions will provide copies of dental health records to patients who request them following applicable agency rules and directives.