Senate Bill No. 134
(By Senator Wooton, Bailey, Walker, Plymale, Love, Ball, Dawson,
Mitchell and Bowman)
[Introduced January 18, 2000; referred to the Committee
on Government Organization.]
A BILL to amend and reenact sections four, seven and seventeen-b,
article four, chapter thirty of the code of West Virginia, one
thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, all relating to the
board of dental examiners; grounds for refusal to issue, suspend or
revoke professional license; compensation for board members
increased; and annual dental license renewal fee increased.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That sections four, seven and seventeen-b, article four,
chapter thirty of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine
hundred thirty-one, as amended, be amended and reenacted, all to
read as follows:
ARTICLE 4. DENTISTS, DENTAL HYGIENISTS AND DENTAL CORPORATIONS.
§30-4-4. Board of dental examiners.
The "West Virginia Board of Dental Examiners" heretofore
established shall be continued and shall be composed of six
members. The members of the board in office on the date this
section takes effect shall, unless sooner removed, continue to
serve until their respective terms expire and until their
successors have been appointed and have qualified. Members of the
board shall serve for a term of five years. In addition to the five
practicing dentists appointed to the board, there shall be
appointed one dental hygienist with a degree in dental hygiene from
an accredited college, who shall be appointed for a term beginning
on the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred seventy-seven.
The member of the board who is a licensed dental hygienist is
empowered to participate in and vote on all transactions and
business of the board.
All members of the board shall be appointed by the governor,
by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. Each member of
the board, at the time of his or her appointment and during his or
her term as such member, shall have been a citizen of this state
and shall have been either a licensed dentist or a licensed dental hygienist for a period of not less than five years immediately
preceding his or her appointment.
No person may be eligible for appointment to the board who is
connected with or interested in any dental college or dental
department of any institution of learning or in a dental supply
Except for the dental hygienist, any member shall be eligible
for reappointment for one additional consecutive term.
Each appointment of a licensed dentist, whether for a full
term or to fill a vacancy, shall be made by the governor from among
three nominees therefor selected by the West Virginia dental
society and each appointment of a licensed dental hygienist,
whether for a full term or to fill a vacancy, shall be made by the
governor from among three nominees therefor selected by the West
Virginia dental hygienists' association. In the case of an
appointment for a full term such nominations shall be submitted to
the governor not later than eight months prior to the date on which
the appointment shall become effective. In the case of an
appointment to fill a vacancy, such nominations shall be submitted
to the governor within thirty days after a request for such
nominations shall have been made by the governor to the president of the West Virginia dental society or the president of the West
Virginia dental hygienists' association. In the event of the
failure of the society or the association to submit to the governor
nominations for an appointment in accordance with the requirements
of this section, the governor may make the appointment without such
Notwithstanding the provisions of section eleven, article one
of this chapter, each member of the board shall receive
hundred dollars for each day actually spent in attending meetings
of the board, or of its committees, and shall also be reimbursed
for all reasonable and necessary expenses actually incurred in the
discharge of his or her duties under the provisions of this
§30-4-7. Refusal to issue, suspension or revocation of license;
The state board of dental examiners may refuse to issue a
license to practice dentistry or dental hygiene in this state, or
after issuance may suspend or revoke the same, for any of the
(1) (a) The presentation to the board of any diploma, license
or certificate illegally or fraudulently obtained, or one obtained from an institution which is not reputable, or one obtained from an
unrecognized or irregular institution or state board.
(b) Suspension or revocation of a license issued by another
state or territory on grounds which would be the basis of
discipline in this state.
(c) Incompetent, negligent or willful misconduct in the
practice of dentistry or dental hygiene, which shall include the
rendering of unnecessary dental services and any departure from, or
the failure to conform to, the minimal standards of acceptable and
prevailing dental or dental hygiene practice in their area of
expertise as shall be determined by the board. The board need not
establish actual injury to the patient in order to adjudge a
dentist, dental hygienist or limited registrant guilty of this
(d) Engaged in conduct that indicates a lack of knowledge of,
an inability to apply or the negligent application of, principles
or skills of dentistry or dental hygiene.
(2) (e) Be guilty of gross ignorance or gross inefficiency in
his or her profession.
(3) (f) Conviction of a felony; and a certified copy of the
record of the court of conviction shall be sufficient proof of such conviction.
(4) (g) Announcing or otherwise holding himself or herself out
to the public as a specialist or as being specially qualified in
any particular branch of dentistry or as giving special attention
to any branch of dentistry or as limiting his or her practice to
any branch of dentistry without first complying with the
requirements established by the board of dental examiners for such
specialty and having been issued a certificate of qualification in
such specialty by the board.
(5) (h) Be guilty of unprofessional conduct. The following
acts or any of them shall be conclusively presumed to be
(a) (1) Be guilty of any fraud or deception.
(b) (2) The commission of a criminal operation or conviction
of a crime involving moral turpitude.
(c) (3) Chronic or persistent inebriety or addiction to
narcotics or drugs.
(d) (4) Be guilty of the violation of any professional
confidence or be guilty of disclosing any professional secret.
(e) (5) Be grossly immoral.
(f) (6) Be guilty of employing what are known as "cappers" or "steerers" to obtain business.
(g) (7) The obtaining of any fee by fraud or
(h) (8) Employ directly or indirectly, or direct or permit any
suspended or unlicensed person so employed, to perform operations
of any kind or to treat lesions of the human teeth or jaws or
correct malimposed formations thereof.
(i) (9) Practice, or offer or undertake to practice, dentistry
under any firm name or trade name or under any name other than his
or her own true name: Provided, That any licensee may practice
under a firm name or partnership name containing nothing but the
surname of every member of such firm or partnership.
(j) (10) Professional connection or association with, or
lending his or her name to another, for the illegal practice of
dentistry, or professional connection or association with any
person, firm, or corporation holding himself, themselves, or itself
out in any manner contrary to this article.
(k) (11) Make use of any advertising relating to the use of
any drug or medicine of unknown formula.
(l) (12) Advertise to practice dentistry or perform any
operation thereunder without causing pain.
(m) (13) Advertise professional superiority or the performance
of professional services in a superior manner.
(n) Advertise prices charged for professional service.
(o) Advertise by means of large display, flickering, or
glaring light signs, or contain as a part thereof the
representation of a tooth, teeth, or bridgework, or any portion of
the human head.
(p) Employ or make use of advertising solicitors or free
publicity press agents.
(q) (14) Advertise to guarantee any dental service.
(r) Advertise in any manner calculated to, or tending to,
deceive or mislead the public: Provided, That such licensee may
announce, by way of a professional card containing not more than
his name, title, degree, office location, office hours, business
telephone number, and residence address and telephone number, if
desired, and if he limits his practice to a specialty he may
announce it, but such card shall not be greater in any case than
five inches by six inches in size and such information may be
inserted in public print when not more than two newspaper columns
in width and two inches in depth; and he may announce his change of
place of business, absence from, or return to, business in the same manner, and issue appointment cards to his patients, when the
information thereon is limited to matter pertaining to the time and
place of appointment and that permitted on the professional card,
and he may display his name, title, and degree upon the windows or
doors of his office and by a doorplate or nameplate or office
directory when the information is limited to not more than that
contained on the professional card, but the name, title and degree
of the licensee shall not be displayed on said doors, windows,
doorplates, and nameplates or office directory in lettering greater
in height than seven inches.
(s) (15) To solicit subscriptions from individuals within or
without the state for, or advertise or offer to individuals within
or without the state, a course or instruction or course materials
in any phase, part or branch of dentistry or dental hygiene in any
journal, newspaper, magazine or dental publication, or by means of
radio, television, or United States mail, or in or by any other
means of contacting individuals: Provided, That the foregoing
provisions of this subparagraph (s) shall not be construed so as to
prohibit: (i) An individual dentist or dental hygienist from
presenting articles pertaining to procedures; or technique to state
or national journals or accepted dental publications; or (ii) educational institutions approved by the board from offering
courses or instruction or course materials to individual dentists
and dental hygienists from within or without the state.
The term advertising, as used in this section, shall be
construed to include
the use of radio or any loud-speaking device
or any other similar method or agency any and all types of public
(16) Any action or conduct which would have warranted the
denial of the license.
This entire section is passed in the interest of the public
health, safety and welfare, and its provisions shall be liberally
construed to carry out its object and purpose.
§30-4-17b. Annual information and renewal fee; notice;
reinstatement; penalty fees; waiver of payment of
fee on retirement or disability; change of
On or before the first day of February of each year, every
dentist licensed to practice dentistry in this state, and every
dental hygienist licensed to practice dental hygiene in this state,
shall transmit to the secretary of the board upon a form prescribed
by the board, his or her signature, post-office address, office address, the serial number of his or her license certificate,
whether he or she has been engaged during the preceding year in the
active and continuous practice of dentistry or dental hygiene, as
the case may be, whether within or without this state, and such
other information as may be required by the board, together with an
information and renewal fee herein provided for.
The annual information and renewal fee for a dentist shall be
seventy-five one hundred twenty-five dollars and for a dental
hygienist shall be fifty dollars: Provided, That nothing stated
herein shall prevent the board from setting such fees by rule as
provided in section six, article one, chapter thirty of this code.
Upon receipt of the required information and the payment of
the proper renewal fee, the licensee shall be issued a renewal
certificate authorizing him or her to continue the practice of
dentistry or the practice of dental hygiene in this state for a
period of one year from the first day of February.
A license to practice dentistry or dental hygiene granted
under the authority of this article shall be canceled on the first
day of May if the holder thereof fails to secure a current renewal
certificate by that day. Any licensee whose license is thus
canceled by reason of the failure, neglect or refusal to secure the proper renewal certificate may be reinstated by the board at any
time within six months from the date of the cancellation of said
license upon the payment of the proper renewal fee and an
additional fee of twenty-five dollars. If the licensee shall not
apply for renewal of his or her license as herein required within
the said six months, that person shall, at the discretion of said
board, be required to file an application for and take the
examination provided in this article should he or she desire to
practice dentistry or dental hygiene in this state.
Upon failure of any licensee to submit the required
information and pay the annual renewal fee as herein required by
the statutory date, the board shall attempt to notify such licensee
in writing by mailing to his or her last registered address a
notice of the requirements of this section apprising him or her of
the fact that his or her license to practice will be canceled on
the statutory date: Provided, That failure to mail or receive such
notice shall not affect the cancellation of his or her license.
The board may waive the annual payment of the renewal fee
herein required, and issue a renewal certificate to any West
Virginia licensee for at least twenty-five years and who is
presently retired from active practice, or to any West Virginia licensee who has retired for reasons of physical disability, so
long as such retirement continues: Provided, That the licensee
provides the board with the information required by this section.
Every licensed dentist within thirty days of changing his or
her place of practice or establishing additional offices shall
furnish the secretary of the board with his or her new professional
Every licensed dental hygienist within thirty days of changing
his or her place of employment shall furnish the secretary of the
board with his or her new professional address and the name of his
or her employer.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to provide additional
grounds for refusing to issue, suspending or revoking a dental
license, to raise the annual dental license renewal fee from $75 to
$125, and to raise the compensation for dental board members from
$100 to $200 per day.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from
the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would