Agencies | Governor
Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Health Professions
Board of Dentistry
Regulations Governing the Practice of Dentistry [18 VAC 60 ‑ 21]
Action Amendment to restriction on advertising dental specialties
Comment Period Ends 9/5/2018
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8/29/18  12:11 pm
Commenter: David Hughes

Opposed. Patients come first.

For Virginians today, the distinction between orthodontic specialists and general practice orthodontic service providers is already somewhat confusing.  Our patients and our profession share a mutual interest in dispelling this misunderstanding, not erasing the distinction altogether.  Already in my office, an increasingly steady stream of in-town patient transfer consultations have revealed the failings of seemingly straightforward orthodontic treatment unsupported by comprehensive diagnosis and treatment planning by non-specialists.  Yes, we orthodontists take great pride in our work and in our credentials, but we also know that we require the trust and cooperation of our patients as well as our education and experience to achieve the best clinical outcomes.

Please consider the public in choosing to clarify the distinction between an orthodontist and a general practice dentist by preserving advertising standards that clearly adknowledge the special skillset that results from completing a multi-year specialty residency program in orthodontics.  To neglect this duty toward transparency seems to me to be clearly unethical.


David R. Hughes, DDS