There was a significant accomplishment this year from the Rhode Island Association of Orthodontists (RIAO). The spread of the at-home, do-it-yourself clear aligner systems have become increasingly more prevalent as a patient’s method of choice of treatment, especially as this pandemic continues. The RIAO was able to work with the AAO national legal team, the Rhode Island Department of Health and the Rhode Island Attorney General’s office to ban the practice of teledentistry, including moving teeth with clear aligners, without an in-person comprehensive examination by a licensed dentist.
Led by RIAO member Dr. Cosmo Haralambidis, the RIDOH Teledentistry Subcommittee has spent countless hours working with the Rhode Island Dental Association to change “recommendations” regarding teledentistry to “regulations.” This new strong language has been approved by the RI Board of Dentistry and now requires an in-person examination by a licensed dentist before a patient is allowed to use any teledentistry, including DIY orthodontics. Only a few states in the country have similar or stronger regulations.
On behalf of the RIAO, I want to thank Dr. Haralambidis for defending our profession and allowing safe delivery of orthodontic care to all patients in Rhode Island.
President, Rhode Island Association of Orthodontists