Dental Hygienists Regulations

Link to law: https://www.novascotia.ca/just/regulations/regs/dhygienists.htm

Subscribe to a Global-Regulation Premium Membership Today!

Key Benefits:

Subscribe Now
Dental Hygienists Regulations
made under subsection 7(4) of the

Dental Hygienists Act

S.N.S. 2007, c. 29

O.I.C. 2009-231 (May 4, 2009, effective May 15, 2009), N.S. Reg. 214/2009

Interpretation

Citation

1     These regulations may be cited as the Dental Hygienists Regulations.

Definitions

2     In these regulations,

 

                (a)    “Act” means the Dental Hygienists Act;

 

                (b)    “Agreement on Internal Trade” means the agreement dated July 1, 1995, asamended, signed by the federal, provincial and territorial governments ofCanada, to facilitate the free movement of persons, goods, services andinvestments throughout Canada;

 

                (c)    “licensing year” means a 12-month period approved by the Council;

 

                (d)    “Mutual Recognition Agreement” means any valid agreement between theCollege or its predecessor Nova Scotia Dental Hygienists Association andother dental hygiene regulatory bodies in Canada regarding recognition ofqualifications of applicants from other provinces and territories of Canada;

                (e)    “nurse practitioner” means a nurse practitioner as defined in the RegisteredNurses Act;

 

                (f)    “scaling teeth and root planing” includes curetting of surrounding tissue;

 

                (g)    “self-directed clinical practice” means the practice of dental hygiene without awritten protocol;

 

                (h)    “self-initiation module” means the self-initiation module of continuingeducation approved by the Council, designed to provide education to dentalhygienists regarding matters relevant to self-directed clinical practice;

 

                (i)     “written protocol” means a protocol that authorizes a dental hygienist toperform certain procedures, and contains the information set out in ScheduleA.

Registration

Qualifications for registration

3     Except as provided in Section 4 for persons subject to the Mutual Recognition Agreement,a person must possess all the following qualifications for registration in the register:

 

                (a)    they must be a Canadian citizen, or be legally entitled to live and work inCanada;

 

                (b)    they must have graduated from an accredited dental hygiene program orsuccessfully completed any examinations approved by the Council;

 

                (c)    they must have successfully completed the certifying examination orexaminations of the National Dental Hygiene Certification Board or equivalentfrom the Province of Quebec, unless they held the equivalent of a practisinglicence before May 1, 1996, in any other jurisdiction approved by the Council;

 

                (d)    they must be in good standing with the dental hygiene regulatory authority ineach jurisdiction in which they previously practised dental hygiene;

 

                (e)    they must not be under investigation for any complaints, and must not be thesubject of any disciplinary proceedings that would prohibit or restrict theirability to practise dental hygiene;

 

                (f)    they must not have pleaded guilty to or been convicted of a criminal offencefor which a pardon has not been issued that would reasonably be considered tohave negative implications for the profession as a whole or for their practice ofdental hygiene;

 

                (g)    they must have demonstrated proficiency in the English language in a mannerdetermined by the Council.

Registration of dental hygienists – Mutual Recognition Agreement transfers

4     A person who is licensed to practise as a dental hygienist under a non-restricted licenseissued before July 1, 2001, in a jurisdiction that is a signatory to the Mutual RecognitionAgreement is eligible to be registered in the Register upon compliance with clause 3(c) andSection 5.

Applying for registration

5     (1)    An applicant for registration must submit a completed application in the formprescribed by the Registrar together with all of the following:

 

                (a)    the applicable registration fee;

 

                (b)    an unmounted passport-size photograph of the applicant;

 

                (c)    a copy of the applicant’s birth certificate or other identification documentssatisfactory to the Registrar;

 

                (d)    a certified copy of any degrees, diplomas and certificates the applicant holdsfrom accredited dental hygiene programs or other dental hygiene programs, orother information acceptable to the Registrar instead of certified copies;

 

                (e)    the applicant’s curriculum vitae, including a chronological listing of previouseducation and employment with descriptions of the applicant’s clinical andnon-clinical experience;

 

                (f)    any reference information the Registrar requires;

 

                (g)    information required by the Registrar to verify the requirements of clauses 3(d)to (g).

 

       (2)    The Registrar may waive any of the criteria for registration required by theseregulations for either of the following reasons:

 

                (a)    it is required by the Agreement on Internal Trade or by law;

 

                (b)    it is consistent with the objects and purpose of the College and the Registrarconsiders it necessary.

Registrar may require interview

6     The Registrar may require an applicant for registration to have a personal interview withany 1 or more of the following:

 

                (a)    the Registrar;

 

                (b)    the Credentials Committee;

 

                (c)    the Council.

Classes of Applicants and Members

Classes

7     The following are the 6 classes of applicants and members under the Act:

 

                (a)    practising;

 

                (b)    non-practising;

 

                (c)    provisional;

 

                (d)    student;

 

                (e)    honorary;

 

                (f)    life.

Qualifications for practising licence

8     (1)    A member applying for a practising licence must possess all of the followingqualifications:

 

                (a)    they must not currently be subject to any disciplinary finding that wouldprohibit them from practising dental hygiene;

 

                (b)    they must intend to practise dental hygiene in the Province;

 

                (c)    they must be currently certified in CPR, to the level approved by the Council;

 

                (d)    for an applicant who graduated from an accredited dental hygiene programmore than 3 years before their application, they must

 

                         (i)     have completed, in the 3 years immediately before their application, 45hours of continuing competency requirements approved by the Council,and

 

                         (ii)    have been practising dental hygiene in the 3 years immediately before thedate of their application;

 

                (e)    for an applicant who graduated from an accredited dental hygiene programmore than 3 years before their application who does not meet the requirementsof subclauses (d)(i) and (ii), they must meet the alternate requirementsapproved by the Council;

 

                (f)    for an applicant who has not practised dental hygiene for the 3 yearsimmediately before their application, they must have passed any examinationor examinations approved by resolution of the Council;

 

                (g)    they must complete an assessment or examination approved by the Councilthat tests the applicant’s knowledge of all of the following:

 

                         (i)     the Act,

 

                         (ii)    the regulations made under the Act,

 

                         (iii)   the bylaws made under the Act,

 

                         (iv)   the code of ethics approved under the bylaws,

 

                         (v)    the standards of practice approved under the bylaws,

 

                         (vi)   any matters relevant to the practice of dental hygiene in the Province asdetermined by the Council;

 

                (h)    for an applicant who intends to engage in self-directed clinical practice and foran applicant applying for a practising licence 2 years after being issued aninitial licence under the Act, they must

 

                         (i)     have successfully completed the self-initiation module, or

 

                         (ii)    have equivalent education or experience to that provided by the self-initiation module, as determined by the Registrar.

 

       (2)    With the exception of clause (1)(h), the Registrar may waive any of the criteria for apractising licence required by these regulations for either of the following reasons:

 

                (a)    it is required by the Agreement on Internal Trade or by law;

 

                (b)    it is consistent with the objects and purpose of the College and the Registrarconsiders it necessary.

Applying for practising licence

9     A member applying for a practising licence must submit a completed application in theform prescribed by the Registrar together with all of the following:

 

                (a)    the applicable licensing fee;

 

                (b)    any information the Registrar may require to establish that the applicant iscompetent and capable and of such character to safely and ethically conduct thepractice of dental hygiene;

 

                (c)    proof of the insurance coverage required by Section 10;

 

                (d)    information required by the Registrar to verify the applicable requirements ofsubsection 8(1).

Insurance coverage for members who hold practising licences

10   A member who holds a practising licence must have professional liability insurancecoverage or similar malpractice protection coverage in the minimum aggregate amount of $2 000 000.

Entitlements of member who holds practising licence

11   A member who holds a practising licence is entitled to all of the following:

 

                (a)    practise dental hygiene as set out in this Act and these regulations;

 

                (b)    use the title “Dental Hygienist” or “Registered Dental Hygienist”, and use theinitials “D.H.” or “R.D.H.”;

 

                (c)    if elected, hold office on the Council;

 

                (d)    be eligible to serve as an appointed member on any committee of the College;

 

                (e)    attend, participate and vote at meetings of the College.

Qualifications for non-practising licence

12   An applicant for a non-practising licence must meet all of the following qualifications:

 

                (a)    they must not currently be subject to any disciplinary finding that wouldprohibit them from practising dental hygiene;

 

                (b)    they must not currently be practising dental hygiene in the Province.

Applying for non-practising licence

13   An applicant for a non-practising licence must submit a completed application in the formprescribed by the Registrar together with the applicable licensing fee.

Entitlements of member who holds non-practising licence

14   A member holding a non-practising licence is entitled to all of the following:

 

                (a)    if elected, hold office on the Council;

 

                (b)    be eligible to serve as an appointed member on any committee of the College;

 

                (c)    attend, participate and vote at meetings of the College.

Qualifications for student class

15   A person applying for entry in the student class must meet all of the followingqualifications:

 

                (a)    they must be a full-time student of an accredited dental hygiene program in theProvince;

 

                (b)    they must not be currently engaged in active professional employment as adental hygienist or intending to provide services described in Section 22 of theAct outside of the clinical practicum component of the accredited dentalhygiene program;

 

                (c)    they must be of good character.

Applying for entry in the student class

16   An applicant for entry in the student class must submit an application in the formprescribed by the Registrar together with all of the following:

 

                (a)    the applicable fee;

 

                (b)    information required by the Registrar to verify that the applicant meets therequirements of Section 15.

Entitlements of persons in the student class

17   A person whose name has been entered in the student class is entitled to all of thefollowing:

 

                (a)    attend and participate in meetings of the College;

 

                (b)    be eligible to serve as an appointed member on any committee of the College;

 

                (c)    access to communications, newsletters and other services of the College asdetermined by the Council.

Qualifications for entry in the honorary class

18   The Council may grant honorary status to any person who meets all of the followingqualifications:

 

                (a)    the person is not otherwise eligible for registration or licensing under the Act;

 

                (b)    the person is nominated by at least 5 voting members who have signed apetition stating their reasons for nominating the person;

 

                (c)    as determined by a majority of the Council, the person has made suchoutstanding contributions to the College or to the profession of dental hygienethat the person is deserving of honorary status in the College.

Entitlements of persons in the honorary class

19   A person whose name has been entered in the honorary class is entitled to all of thefollowing:

 

                (a)    attend and participate in meetings of the College;

 

                (b)    access to communications, newsletters and other services of the College asdetermined by the Council.

Qualifications for life membership

20   (1)    The Council may grant life membership to a person who meets all of the followingqualifications:

 

                (a)    the person have [has] been a member in good standing of the College or itspredecessor for at least 15 years;

 

                (b)    the person [has] been nominated by at least 5 voting members who have signeda petition stating their reasons for nominating the person;

 

                (c)    as determined by the Council, the person has made such outstandingcontributions to the College or to the profession of dental hygiene that they aredeserving of life membership in the College.

 

       (2)    A person is eligible for life membership whether or not they hold another licence.

Entitlements of life members

21   A person who has been granted a life membership is entitled to all of the following:

 

                (a)    attend and participate in meetings of the College;

 

                (b)    vote at general meetings of the College;

 

                (c)    access to communications, newsletters and other services of the College asdetermined by the Council.

Term of licences

22   Unless it is suspended or revoked, a practising, non-practising or student licence issuedunder these regulations remains in effect until the end of the licensing year in which it isissued.

Renewing licences

23   (1)    An applicant for renewal of a practising, non-practising or student licence may renewtheir licence by following the same procedure and meeting the same qualifications asfor an initial licence.

 

       (2)    If a member fails to renew their practising licence by the renewal date, the Registrarmust notify the member and their employer, if any, by registered mail that themember is unable to practise dental hygiene until the member meets therequirements for renewal of their licence.

Transfer of student, life and honorary members

24   A person who was [a] student, life or honorary member of the Nova Scotia DentalHygienist Association immediately before the date the Act comes into force is deemed tomeet the qualifications for and must be entered as [a] members in the same licensing classunder the Act after the Act comes into force.

Scope of Practice

Actions prescribed as included in practice of dental hygiene

25   The following actions are prescribed under clause 22(1)(b) of the Act as being included inthe scope of practice of dental hygienists, and dental hygienists are authorized to carry outthe following actions under the specified conditions:

 

                (a)    ordering, prescribing and administering all of the following drugs:

 

                         (i)     antimicrobial agents, other than antibiotics,

 

                         (ii)    desensitizing agents, including topical anaesthetics,

 

                         (iii)   anticariogenic agents;

 

                (b)    ordering, administering and interpreting radiographs for dental hygieneservices;

 

                (c)    administering oral anaesthetic, only if under the written order of the client’sdentist or physician;

 

                (d)    performing orthodontic and restorative procedures, only if under the writtenorder of a dentist.

Actions prescribed as excluded from practice of dental hygiene

26   The following actions are prescribed under clause 22(1)(c) of the Act as being excludedfrom the scope of practice of dental hygienists, and dental hygienists are not authorized tocarry out the following actions:

 

                (a)    diagnosis, other than diagnosis for dental hygiene services and interventions setout in Section 22 of the Act;

 

                (b)    dental treatment planning, other than planning for dental hygiene services andinterventions set out in Section 22 of the Act;

 

                (c)    severing or cutting hard or soft tissue, other than curettage coincidental toscaling teeth or root planing;

 

                (d)    ordering, administering or prescribing drugs other than the drugs listed inclause 25(a) or (c);

 

                (e)    prescribing or designing intra-oral appliances or prosthetics other than athleticmouth guards.

Protocol for authorizing dental hygienist to perform certain procedures

27   A dental hygienist who did not meet the licensing qualifications in clause 8(h) mayperform the following procedures only if authorized by a dentist in a written protocol:

 

                (a)    scaling teeth and root planing;

 

                (b)    ordering, administering and interpreting radiographs for dental hygienepurposes;

 

                (c)    ordering, administering or prescribing the drugs listed in clause 25(a).

Contraindications to performing scaling teeth and root planing

28   (1)    In this Section, “clearance” means a written authorization from a client’s dentist,physician or a nurse practitioner providing authority to a dental hygienist to engagein scaling teeth and root planing, despite the presence of any of the conditionsoutlined in subsection (3).

 

       (2)    The conditions outlined in subsection (3) are not contraindications under clause23(1)(b) of the Act if there is a relevant, current and documented clearance for theclient.

 

       (3)    All of the following are prescribed as contraindications under clause 23(1)(b) of theAct, and a dental hygienist must not, on their own initiative, perform scaling teethand root planing nor continue scaling teeth and root planing for a client when any ofthe following conditions are reported or known to be present in the client, or if thedental hygienist is in doubt as to the status or accuracy of the medical or oral healthhistory of the client, unless there is a relevant, current and documented clearance asprovided for in subsection (2):

 

                (a)    except as provided in subsection (4), any cardiac condition for which antibioticprophylaxis is recommended in the guidelines set by the American HeartAssociation;

 

                (b)    any condition, other than as listed in clause (a), for which antibioticprophylaxis is recommended or required;

 

                (c)    any unstable medical or unstable oral health condition that may affect theappropriateness or safety of the procedure;

 

                (d)    active chemotherapy or radiation therapy, or previous head or neck radiation;

 

                (e)    immunosuppression caused by disease, medications or treatment modalities;

 

                (f)    any blood disorders;

 

                (g)    active tuberculosis;

 

                (h)    drug or alcohol dependency that may affect the appropriateness or safety of theprocedure;

 

                (i)     high risk of infective endocarditis;

 

                (j)     a medical or oral health condition that the dental hygienist is unfamiliar with orthat could affect the aqppropriateness, efficacy or safety of the procedure;

 

                (k)    a drug or a combination of drugs that the dental hygienist is unfamiliar with orthat could affect the appropriateness, efficacy or safety of the procedure;

 

                (l)     a medical history that indicates a known medical intervention requiring adental pre-screening.

 

       (4)    A dental hygienist may perform scaling teeth and root planing on their own initiativewhen a client has a cardiac condition for which antibiotic prophylaxis isrecommended in the guidelines set by the American Heart Association if all of thefollowing criteria are met:

 

                (a)    the dental hygienist has consulted with the client’s dentist, physician or nursepractitioner about the client’s condition;

 

                (b)    it is determined that it is appropriate to proceed with the procedure when theclient is taking the prescribed medication in accordance with the guidelines;

 

                (c)    the client confirms that they are taking the prescribed medication in accordancewith the guidelines.

Discipline

Member responsible for expenses

29   Except for costs awarded under Section 61 of the Act, a member is responsible for allexpenses they incur in their defence during a discipline proceeding.

Additional Hearing Committee rules of procedure

30   The Hearing Committee may determine any additional rules of procedure for hearings thatare not covered by the Act or these regulations.

Witnesses

31   (1)    Witnesses at a hearing must testify under oath or affirmation.

 

       (2)    An oath or affirmation taken at a hearing may be administered by any member of theHearing Committee, or other person in attendance authorized by law to administeroaths or affirmations.

 

       (3)    Witnesses who are present under subpoena at a hearing are entitled to the sameallowance as witnesses attending a trial of an action in the Supreme Court of NovaScotia.

Evidence

32   (1)    Evidence may be presented at a hearing in any manner that the Hearing Committeeconsiders appropriate in accordance with the Act, and the Committee is not bound bythe rules of law respecting evidence applicable to judicial proceedings.

 

       (2)    Evidence obtained by the Hearing Committee and information obtained by theInvestigation Committee or an investigator regarding a complaint that has not beendismissed by the Investigation Committee must be preserved for at least 5 years fromthe date the evidence is presented or the information is obtained.

Publication and notification of revocations and suspensions

33   (1)    The College must publish a notice of any suspension or revocation of a member’slicence or revocation of a member’s registration in at least 1 newspaper withcirculation throughout the Province.

 

       (2)    The College must notify all of the following of any suspension or revocation of amember’s licence or revocation of a member’s registration:

 

                (a)    dental hygiene regulatory authorities in other Canadian jurisdictions;

 

                (b)    the Federation of Dental Hygiene Regulating Authorities;

 

                (c)    its members.

 

       (3)    The Hearing Committee must determine whether to publish a decision, or part of adecision, that results in a disposition other than a suspension or revocation.

Suspension of licence for contravention of legislation

34   (1)    The Registrar may suspend a member’s licence without notice or investigation uponproof of contravention of any requirement of the Act, the regulations or the bylawsthat requires the member to pay a fee, file a document or to do any other act by aspecified or ascertainable date.

 

       (2)    A member whose licence is suspended under subsection (1) must immediately ceasepractising dental hygiene until the member is reinstated and a notice of reinstatementis received from the Registrar.

 

       (3)    The Registrar must not reinstate a member’s licence suspended under subsection (1)until the member has paid the fee, filed the document or carried out whatever act wasrequired.

 

       (4)    Despite Section 33, the Registrar may determine whether a suspension under thisSection requires publication, but any publication must be in accordance withsubsections 33(1) and (2).

Advertising

Advertising standards

35   (1)    In this Section, “advertising” means to publish, display, or distribute anyadvertisement, announcement or information related to a dental hygienist’s practice,or to cause or permit it, directly or indirectly, to be published, displayed, distributedor used.

 

       (2)    A member must ensure that any advertising for their services meets all of thefollowing criteria:

 

                (a)    it is accurate and not false, fraudulent, ambiguous or likely to be confusing,misleading or deceptive;

 

                (b)    it is capable of being proven to be true by facts independent of personalfeelings, beliefs, opinions or interpretations;

 

                (c)    it is of a dignified nature and in good taste, so as to uphold the dignity, honourand ethics of the profession and not bring the dental hygienist or the professioninto disrepute;

 

                (d)    it does not make comparisons with another practice or practitioner, or suggestthat the services provided are unique or superior to another practice orpractitioner;

 

                (e)    it does not refer to the quality of services provided;

 

                (f)    it is directed at the general public and not at an individual member of thepublic other than current clients of record;

 

                (g)    it is relevant to the public’s ability to make an informed choice.

 

       (3)    In clause (2)(g), “information relevant to the public’s ability to make an informedchoice” includes all of the following information:

 

                (a)    a dental hygienist’s

                         (i)     name,

                         (ii)    professional description,

                         (iii)   academic degrees gained by examination;

 

                (b)    the office’s

                         (i)     location and address,

                         (ii)    e-mail address,

                         (iii)   telephone and fax numbers,

                         (iv)   hours and days it is open;

 

                (c)    the languages spoken at the office;

 

                (d)    universal symbols, such as symbols for wheelchair accessibility, credit cards ordebit card systems;

 

                (e)    the services available.

Professional corporations advertising

36   Section 35 applies with the necessary changes in detail to professional corporations.

Schedule A

Suggested Protocol for Authorizing Dental Hygienist to Perform Procedures

Order to Proceed with Scaling and Root Planing when a Dental Hygienist has not been

Authorized by the College of Dental Hygienists to Engage in Self-directed Practice

Including Curetting Surrounding Tissue; Ordering, Administering and Interpreting

Radiographs for Dental Hygiene Purposes; and Ordering, Administering and/or

Prescribing Those Drugs Included in Clause 25(a) of the Dental Hygienist Regulations

In this office, it is the accepted protocol that each patient shall undergo a comprehensiveexamination by a dentist, which examination shall include a detailed medical and oral healthhistory, which medical and oral health history shall be updated at every subsequentappointment.

If there are no changes in the medical or oral health since a patient’s last appointment in thisoffice, I authorize the dental hygienist(s) listed below to undertake: scaling and root planing,including curetting surrounding tissue; and/or ordering, administering and interpretingradiographs for dental hygiene purposes; and, and/or ordering, administering, and/or prescribingthose drugs included in clause 25(a) of the Dental Hygienists Regulations.

If the patient discloses changes in the patient’s medical or oral health since the patient’s lastappointment in this office, the dental hygienist shall not undertake any of the above servicesunless the dental hygienist has obtained a patient-specific order from me, or a dentist authorizedby me to issue orders in my absence.

Dental Hygienist(s) authorized under this protocol

Name(s) (printed)                                             Signature(s)

___________________________                    ____________________________

___________________________                    ____________________________

___________________________                    ____________________________

___________________________                    ____________________________

Authorizing dentist’s signature                        Date

___________________________                    _________________________