The state board of dental examiners has previously opted for issuing the guidance which has effectively banned virtual dentistry.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has signed a bill into law this week. It is getting formal authorization for teledentistry in the state. This law is followed back and forth between the Dental Examiners of the Texas State Board. It is issuing guidelines to eliminate all forms of teledentistry. Also, it includes the Pacific Legal Foundation, which filed a lawsuit in February. The Lawsuit has challenged the ban of the examiners.
This is great news for the citizens of Texas. They will continue to have access to the quality of dental care at the comfort of their home. In March 2020, the State Board of Dental Examiners issued their guidance. The guidelines are declaring that Texas dentists do not have the authorization for practicing teledentistry.
This guidance is stemming from the board rule, which is requiring documentation for the tactile findings. Also, it includes the visual examination of the softer and the harder oral cavity tissues.
The tactile exams are not possible to take place remotely. Thus the board has interpreted a rule which is effective for banning teledentistry. As Texas does not authorize teledentistry, the providers are saying that their insurance providers are refusing the coverage for the remote dental consultations.
They have filed a lawsuit in response to it while addressing the ban. Dr. Celeste Mohr, the lead plaintiff in this case, is conducting video consultations with her patients for dental problems. Mohr lives in South Carolina, while most of her patients are from Texas. The board rules have caused irreparable harm to her practice.
HB 2065 will take effect on September 1. It will prevent the board from banning teledentistry. Also, it will bring teledentistry to the line of practice.
The tiff in Texas is having a similar showdown to North Carolina. With the 6-3 decision, the U.S Supreme Court has ruled that the medical boards are not immune to the federal antitrust laws. At the same time, the experts are predicting that this case can give new legal weight to the telemedicine companies in this state.