Specialty Recognition

Medicine and dentistry are in a transition period as states determine what constitutes a “specialty.” Previously, states looked to board-certification and educational standards to serve as the basis of this determination, but recent lawsuits and Federal Trade Commission action have upended the system.

Trending State Issues: Specialty Advertising

The AAID v. Parker advertising case ruling in favor of non-ADA recognized dental specialties threw the question of what is a dental specialty wide open. Dental boards and legislatures have reacted by amending their specialty advertising language in a few ways. In the past, many states included language that essentially deferred the ability to determine specialties to the ADA or CODA. This practice has served as the basis of many lawsuits, so AAOMS is seeing states amend their laws to grant the determination of what constitutes a dental specialty to the legislature or the dental board explicitly. AAOMS also is seeing laws amended to require those who wish to advertise as a specialist to meet specified educational thresholds or hold specified board certifications.

For more information on the issues facing your state, please view the state legislative tracking map, listen to the most recent AAOMS Government Affairs Update or contact the AAOMS Government Affairs Department.