Prescriptive Supervision Law

In 2014, the Indiana General Assembly approved legislation that allows, under certain circumstances, dental hygienists to practice under “prescriptive supervision.” In contrast to direct supervision, prescriptive supervision means that the dentist may not be required to be present while hygiene services are being provided. Additional legislation went into effect on July 1, 2015, which further clarified the rule.


House Bill 1061

House Bill 1061, which outlines prescriptive supervision, allows a dental hygienist to practice under prescriptive supervision in the following circumstances:


  • The hygienist may practice under prescriptive supervision in dental office if the patient has a current medical history on file and has received a comprehensive oral examination in the past seven months.
  • The hygienist may practice under prescriptive supervision in a setting where a written prescription for care has been issued by the dentist within the previous 45 days.
  • The dental hygienist must have completed at least two (2) years of active practice as a dental hygienist under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist.
  • In no cases may a dental hygienist use a laser to provide treatment for a patient.


The full text of HB 1061 is available online.



House Bill 1282

House Bill 1282 went on to clarify the original bill, stating:


  • Dental hygiene practice: Amends the definition of ‘prescriptive supervision’ for purposes of the practice of dental hygiene.
  • Provides that a dental hygienist may not use a laser that cuts hard or soft tissue to provide treatment to a patient.
  • Requires that if a dental hygienist practices under the prescriptive supervision of a licensed dentist, the dentist’s written authority must be recorded, signed and dated in the patient’s records.


The full text of HB 1282 is available online.



Using Prescriptive Supervision in Your Practice

For information on practical scenarios of how you can take advantage of prescriptive supervision, see Prescriptive Supervision Scenarios – Using Prescriptive Supervision in Your Practice >>>




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