(1) Except as otherwise provided in this section, a licensed dental hygienist shall perform the dental hygiene functions listed in section 38-1131 only when authorized to do so by a licensed dentist who shall be responsible for the total oral health care of the patient.
(2) The department may authorize a licensed dental hygienist to perform the following functions in the conduct of public health-related services in a public health setting or in a health care or related facility: Preliminary charting and screening examinations; oral health education, including workshops and inservice training sessions on dental health; and all of the duties that a dental assistant who is not licensed is authorized to perform.
(3)(a) Except for periodontal scaling, root planing, and the administration of local anesthesia and nitrous oxide, the department may authorize a licensed dental hygienist to perform all of the authorized functions within the scope of practice of a licensed dental hygienist in the conduct of public health-related services in a public health setting or in a health care or related facility. In addition, the department may authorize a licensed dental hygienist to perform the following functions in such a setting or facility or for such a patient:
(i) Upon completion of education and testing approved by the board, writing prescriptions for mouth rinses and fluoride products that help decrease risk for tooth decay; and
(ii) Upon completion of education and testing approved by the board, minor denture adjustments.
(b) Authorization shall be granted by the department under this subsection upon (i) filing an application with the department and (ii) providing evidence of current licensure and professional liability insurance coverage. Authorization may be limited by the department as necessary to protect the public health and safety upon good cause shown and may be renewed in connection with renewal of the licensed dental hygienist's license.
(c) A licensed dental hygienist performing dental hygiene functions as authorized under this subsection shall (i) report authorized functions performed by him or her to the department on a form developed and provided by the department and (ii) advise the patient or recipient of services or his or her authorized representative that such services are preventive in nature and do not constitute a comprehensive dental diagnosis and care.
(4) The department shall compile the data from the reports provided under subdivision (3)(c)(i) of this section and provide an annual report to the Board of Dentistry and the State Board of Health. The department shall annually evaluate the delivery of dental hygiene services in the state and, on or before September 15 of each year beginning in 2021, provide a report electronically to the Clerk of the Legislature regarding such evaluation. The Health and Human Services Committee of the Legislature shall hold a hearing at least once every three years to assess the reports submitted pursuant to this subsection.
(5) For purposes of this section:
(a) Health care or related facility means a hospital, a nursing facility, an assisted-living facility, a correctional facility, a tribal clinic, or a school-based preventive health program; and
(b) Public health setting means a federal, state, or local public health department or clinic, community health center, rural health clinic, or other similar program or agency that serves primarily public health care program recipients.