Texas Register Preamble

The State Board of Dental Examiners (Board) adopts new rule 22 TAC §107.110, concerning baseless or unfounded complaints. The purpose of this rule is to create the structure for dismissal of baseless or unfounded complaints as required by Texas Occupations Code §263.0074. Adoption of this rule is a requirement of Senate Bill 313 of the 85th Legislature. This new rule is adopted without changes to the proposed text as published in the April 5, 2019, issue of the Texas Register (44 TexReg 1635) and will not be republished.

One comment was received after publication of the proposed rule during the official comment period. The Texas Dental Association provided a written comment supporting the adoption of the rule, but expressing concern regarding complainants who may not possess the necessary dental or clinical knowledge necessary to articulate complaints identifying violations. The Board agrees that this is a valid concern, but does not feel that the comment justifies changes to the text of the adopted rule. The Board's existing preliminary investigation process in 22 TAC §107.103 includes an inquiry period where the complainant is able to provide additional information and communicate with Board staff, steps that must be taken before any complaint reaches the official investigation phase. The Board feels that these safeguards along with the Board's goal of protection of the public health and safety will ensure complainants will receive reasonable assistance and the Board will conduct a reasonable inquiry for each complaint submitted.

This rule is adopted under Texas Occupations Code §254.001(a) - (b), which gives the Board authority to adopt rules necessary to perform its duties and ensure compliance with state laws relating to the practice of dentistry to protect the public health and safety, and permits the Board to adopt rules regarding its proceedings, and Texas Occupations Code §263.0074, which directs the Board to adopt rules establishing criteria for determining baseless or unfounded complaints.

This rule implements the requirements of Texas Occupations Code §263.0074.

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