HARRISBURG – Lackawanna County Rep. Kyle Mullins introduced a bill giving dentists and dental hygienists more flexibility to move to PA and provide dental services. It comes as the state is facing shortages in the dental workforce. House Bill 1586 would ease the regulatory burden facing out-of-state dental professionals seeking to practice in PA. If enacted, PA would be part of the Dentist and Dental Hygienist Compact, a program that enables licensed dentists and hygienists from participating states to practice in PA without having to go through a cumbersome licensing procedure. Dental practitioners would be required to complete an application process, have no disciplinary action against them, be in good standing with their current licensing board, and undergo background checks. Mullins said in many parts of the state, there are not enough dentists and hygienists to meet the demand for services. According to the most recent CDC data, roughly one-third of Pennsylvanians are not receiving regular dental care. PA already participates in several interstate licensure compacts for other health professionals such as nurses, EMS personnel, mental health professionals, and physical therapists. The bill is before the PA House Professional Licensure Committee.