March 2019 Volume LIV Number 2

 
 
 
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Legislative and Regulatory Update

November 2012 Volume XLVIII Number 6

 Unless otherwise noted, for further information on any of these issues please contact Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel C. Scott Litch at (312) 337-2169 or slitch@aapd.org.

Federal News

CR and Sequestration

In late September, Congress approved a Continuing Resolution (CR) for FY 2013 to fund the government for the next six months, until the end of March, 2013. This essentially provides level funding for most programs, including the Title VII primary care dental train- ing program. A big cloud hanging over FY 2013 appropriations is the automatic sequestration that would take place on Jan. 2, 2013, if Congress takes no action. This is the result of the president and Con-

gress failing to reach an agreement on debt negotiations last year. The White Office of Management and Budget estimates for example that the National Institutes of Health budget would be cut by $2.5 billion. Title VII programs would face a seven to eight percent cut.

On Aug. 8, 2012, the Organized Dentistry Coalition (which in- cludes the AAPD and ADA) wrote Congress warning of the negative consequences for oral health programs of allowing sequestration to occur, including:

"Reducing the number of dental residencies that provide a vital source of support for postdoctoral training in general, pediatric and public health dentistry and perform clinical care in facilities that serve the underserved. Graduates of these programs are also more likely to treat at-risk populations in their practices and/or pursue careers in dental public health and academia."

FY 2012 Primary Care Dental Faculty Development Awards Announced

The federal Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) recently announced the following FY 2012 faculty develop- ment awards for clinical care and education in primary care dentistry:

University of California, San Diego

University of Florida

University of Kentucky

University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey

Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center (N.Y.)

Lutheran Medical Center (N.Y.)

Columbia University (N.Y.)

University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio

Some of these have greater faculty development plans for pediatric dentistry than others. There were also several quality applications that were approved but unfunded, which will be highlighted in ongoing AAPD advocacy efforts.


State News

California: SB 694 Fails Passage in the State Senate

On Aug, 16, 2012, SB 694, which would have established a State Office of Oral Health headed by a State Dental Director and authorized a research study of expanded functions for RDHs and RDAEFs, failed passage out of the Senate Appropriations Committee and therefore did not reach the Senate floor. The Committee acted because of concerns with the fiscal implications of the Office of the State Dental Director rather than with concerns about the research study. While the bills sponsor, Senator Alex Padilla, proposed additional amendments attempting to resolve the committees fiscal worries, ultimately the Committee would not approve the creation of a new state office for which the state cannot afford funding. Below is California Dental Association President Dan Davidsons report to CDA membership on the demise of SB 694:

CDA Presidents Letter:

From the Desk of Daniel G. Davidson, D.M.D.

We learned today, with disappointment, that SB 694 was held on the Suspense File in the Assembly Appropriations Committee, rendering the bill dead for the legislative session. For several weeks, weve been working with Senator Padilla to address the Ap- propriations Committee and Administration concerns regarding the funding of the dental director and Office of Oral Health. The Appropriations Committee communicated that, while the amendments offered this week by Senator Padilla reflected his diligence to resolve the committees fiscal concerns, the committee could not approve a proposal to create new state infrastructure that the state cannot fund.

While we are disappointed in this outcome, we are pleased that Senator Padilla remained steadfastly committed to a comprehen- sive approach to the states access to care issues — and therefore committed to the dental director and Office of Oral Health — de- spite significant pressure he was under to remove or diminish the dental director component of the bill due to the funding concerns.

The action today on SB 694 does not mark the end to either the dental director or the workforce issues, and CDA will continue to advocate for the associations policy as directed in the Access Proposal: Phased Strategies for Reducing the Barriers to Dental Care in California and by the actions of the House of Delegates in March. Establishing an Office of Oral Health is the foundation of the Access Proposal and remains the number one priority for which we will aggressively advocate along with the many other ele- ments of the Proposal.

Similarly, we anticipate that others may decide to continue the advocacy for a workforce solution in California. While a future ef- fort may not be as reasonable or as comprehensive as Senator Padillas study approach in SB 694, CDAs policy on this issue remains clear that we will oppose any effort to allow anyone other than a dentist to perform irreversible procedures without evidence of the safety, quality, patient satisfaction and cost effectiveness of doing so. Throughout this legislative session, we believe there was clear support from the legislature and administration for the workforce study approach endorsed by Senator Padilla in SB 694.

 

I would like to thank CDA leadership, particularly the Government Affairs Council, for the significant investment of time, energy, and certainly emotion that has been dedicated to SB 694 this year. I also want to thank Senator Padilla for his leadership on this legislation and willingness to work with us over several months to address our dental director goal and specific policy parameters regarding the study.

Sincerely,

Daniel G. Davidson, D.M.D.

President, California Dental Association

 

Essential Health Benefits Resources—State Implementation

The AAPD has created a website page that collects important materials concerning implementation of essential health benefits state-by- state under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Pediatric oral health is defined under the ACA as an essential health benefit, and federal guidance indicates states can use the Federal Employees Dental and Vision Plan or the state CHIP plan as a benchmark for a stand-alone pediatric oral health plan. This website page contains an overview of state health insurance exchange progress, key federal documents, AAPD documents and resources, and analysis from states concerning their pediatric oral health benchmark plan for state health insurance exchanges. Note that there is a wide variety among the states in terms of where they stand in this process. The page also includes a recent summary by the National Associa- tion of Dental Plans. This page will be frequently updated, so bookmark and check periodically. The link is http://www.aapd.org/advocacy/essential_health_benefits. For further information, contact COO and General Counsel C. Scott Litch at slitch@aapd.org..