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Michigan Legislature authorizes midlevel dental providers

December 19, 2018

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Legislation heading to Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder would authorize midlevel dental providers to work in the state.

Dental therapists could perform a variety of routine procedures now handled by dentists. They would need a license and could practice if they reach an agreement with a supervising dentist.

Supporters say the bill that won final Senate approval 23-15 Wednesday would help ensure treatment for more patients in underserved populations, including in rural areas. They say Michigan has an uneven distribution of dentists, leaving people without access to basic care.

Opponents, such as the Michigan Dental Association, say there is no shortage of dentists. They say dental therapists with less training than dentists should not perform irreversible procedures.

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Online:

Senate Bill 541: http://bit.ly/2V4Evjs

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