|Action||Amendment to restriction on advertising dental specialties|
|Comment Period||Ends 9/5/2018|
As a 2nd year resident in the VCU orthodontics graduate program, I can honestly say that this proposed legislation frightens me. I went to a very highly regarded dental school prior to residency, yet I received very limited orthodontic training over the course of my 4 years in dental school. I believe I put o-ties on a patient once, and I had only a few, sparse lectures. Prior to deciding that I wanted to persue orthodontics as a career, I naively thought that I could take some weekend CE courses and maybe dabble in ortho as a general dentist. 14 months into my residency program, I can accutely appreciate how dangerous such dabbling can be. There is no possible way that a weekend or online course could prepare anybody to thoroughly diagnose, treatment plan, and treat patients to the same high degree as somebody who completed a multi-year training program.
My opposition is not so much a "protection of the specialty" as it is an impassioned plea for protection of the patients & patients' right to make informed decisions. We cannot possibly expect the general public to undertand or appreciate the nuances of a dental education that is then followed by additional training in a specialty field. Thus, it is the duty of the state dental boards to translate these facts into information and terminology that patients can understand. Preventing a specialist's ability to use clear & accurate language to convey their qualifications directly violates the pledge that we all take as doctors -- the pledge to do no harm