To legally operate dental x-ray equipment and perform dental radiographic procedures in Pennsylvania under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist, a dental assistant must meet the requirements shown below.
In the state of Pennsylvania, a dental assistant must:
1. Pass the national DANB Radiation Health and Safety (RHS) exam, AND THEN
2. Submit an application for authorization to perform dental radiologic procedures to the Pennsylvania State Board of Dentistry (PSBD).
The Pennsylvania Application for Authorization to Perform Radiological Procedures is available in the application forms area of the Pennsylvania State Board of Dentistry's website. Once the application is received and processed, an official notice will be issued and mailed from the Pennsylvania State Board of Dentistry.
Learn more about DANB's Radiation Health and Safety (RHS) exam
A dental assistant in the state of Pennsylvania may perform basic supportive dental procedures specified by the state dental practice act under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist.
There are no education or training requirements for this level of dental assisting.
To perform expanded functions in the state of Pennsylvania under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist, a dental assistant must hold a state certification as an Expanded Function Dental Assistant (EFDA). To obtain this state certification, one must:
1a. Graduate from an expanded function dental assisting program at a two-year college or other Pennsylvania Board-approved institution which offers an associate degree, or
1b. Graduate from a CODA-accredited dental hygiene school, which requires the successful completion of at least 75 hours of clinical and didactic instruction in restorative functions, or
1c. Complete a state certification program in expanded function dental assisting of at least 200 hours of clinical and didactic instruction from either a CODA-accredited dental assisting program or a Pennsylvania Board-approved dental assisting program, AND
2. Apply for state certification in expanded functions to the Pennsylvania State Board of Dentistry, AND
3. Pass a Pennsylvania Board-acceptable written exam.
Note: Expanded function dental assistants who are currently licensed or certified in another state or territory, or in Canada, may be granted licensure or certification in Pennsylvania if their credentials meet the requirements of the Pennsylvania Practice Act.
CODA-Accredited Dental Assisting Programs