Code of Ethics
ARTICLE I – DUTY TO THE COMMUNITY
Section 1. Primary Duty – The dentist’s , dental hygienist’s, and dental technologist’s primary duty of serving the public is accomplished by giving his/ her professional service to the best of his/her capabilities in accordance with established standards of care and by conducting himself/herself in a manner befitting a professional of high esteem.
Section 2. Emergency Service – A dentist, dental hygienist, and dental technologist when consulted in an emergency by the patient of another, shall attend ONLY to the conditions leading to the emergency. Upon completion of the treatment, he/she shall return the patient to his/her dentist-of-record and inform him/her of the conditions found and treated.
Section 3. Delegation of Service – Dentist shall conduct himself/herself a professional deportment at all times; therefore, he shall not delegate procedure, services, or operations in the mouth which require his/her personal competence as a professional. He/she shall only delegate services to duly licensed dentist, licensed dental hygienist, or licensed dental technologist in his/her employ to perform dental services duly expressed by law. He/she shall at all times be responsible for the actions of his/her employ at the areas of his/her jurisdictions (or areas of assigned practice) during assigned clinic/duty hours.
Section 4. Supervision Of Work – The dentist shall supervise his/her associates and his/her auxiliaries in the performance of their duties and shall at all times assure delivery of quality standards of care.
Section 5. Professional Fees – The dentist shall ascertain fees for his/her professional services taking into consideration the nature of the case, his/her expertise of the case, efforts, skills and materials involved. The dentist must discuss the treatment plan, options, and corresponding fees for the proposed treatment options. He/she shall at all times give credence to his/her work and, therefore, establish his/her professional fees rendering due dignity to the profession.
Section 6. Irreproachable Conduct – The dentist shall conduct himself/herself in a manner completely above suspicion or reproach. The dentist shall not allow his/her name to cover up illegal acts such as misrepresentation of industrial/commercial/private establishments required by law to engage the services of a dentist or for illegal practitioners, quacks, or charlatans; or to provide certification without due basis.
Section 7. Discoveries Of Work – In the interest of public health, the dentist, dental hygienist, and dental technologist must make available their discoveries, inventions, or works which are useful in safeguarding or promoting health, subject to government regulatory laws.
Section 8. Oral Health Care Program – The dentist, dental hygienist, and dental technologist shall participate in programs designed for oral health education and care. They shall participate in volunteer programs for the delivery of oral health services in underserved and underprivileged areas.
Section 9. Leadership – In all efforts to improve the dental health of the public, the dentist, dental hygienist, and dental technologist shall make available to the community their skills, knowledge, and experiences, particularly in the field of specialty.
Section 10. Bioethics – Every dentist participating in research projects involving procedure in the oral cavity to any person/s must conform to international ethical standards taking into considerations the human rights of the subjects and duly informing them of the outcome and risks of the study. Each subject must have a signed informed consent form/s obtained at the onset of the study; and in instances where changes in the research protocol is essential for the completion of the study, another signed informed consent form must be obtained from the subjects. In the event that minors are the subjects of the study, parental consent must be obtained.
Section 11. Records Keeping – Every dentist must obtain baseline medical and dental record for all patients of his/her office. The said record must include, among others, his/her treatment plan, diagnostic records such as radiographs, blood test record/results, consent form. Medical clearance must be filed with the patients dental records and must be in his/her safekeeping for at least ten (10) years.
ARTICLE II – DUTY TO THE PROFESSION
Section 12. Keeping Professionally Fit – The right of every dentist, dental hygienist, and dental technologist to professional status rests in the degree of knowledge, skills, and efficiency with which he/she serves his/her patients, his/her community, and the nationalities under his/her care.
12.1. Continuing Professional Development – In order to continually enhance his professional competence, every dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist shall pursue continuing education programs offered by the Philippine Dental Association, (PDA) Inc. and accredited CPE providers duly accredited by the CPE Council for dentists, dental hygienists, and dental technologists and other CPE programs duly accredited by the Board of Dentistry and the PRC.
12.2 Continuing Professional Education Development Credits (CDEC) – – Every dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist shall complete a minimum of sixty (60) Continuing Education/Development Credit units every three (3) years prior to the renewal of his Professional Identification Card, provided that the nature of the CPE programs shall conform to the advance competency program stipulated by the CPE Council.
12.3 Preceptorship – the Board of Dentistry shall directly regulate the establishment and conduct of training delivered independently by an individual or group of dental professionals, having appropriate juridical personalities. The aforementioned training must be conducted in a school duly recognized by the Commission on Higher Education or hospital duly recognized by the Department of Health as a training hospital.
12.4 Specialty Group – Each Specialty Society shall apply to the Board of Dentistry for the accreditation of the Society. Each Specialty Society must evolve its own system of accreditation of its members subject to the approval of the Board and the Commission; provided, that specialty training, accredit training programs under the its area of specialization, assist the Board of Dentistry in monitoring the different specialty programs and preceptorship, establish its council, police its own ranks; and shall at all times safeguard the public against those who do not meet the qualifications prescribed by the system.
12.5 Evidence of Professional Credentials – The dentist’s school diploma, certificate of registration, professional identification card, certificates and of training residency, certificate of proficiency issued by specialty council, the Board of Dentistry and such other documents, or papers required by law shall be displayed in his clinic or reception room. Plaques, Testimonials, Certificates of Appreciation obtained as a result of the dentist’s professional competency maybe displayed separately in the dentist’s private office only. For other venues of practice, a certified true copy shall be obtained from the dental school and Certificate of Registration and Professional Identification Card obtained at PRC and properly posted at the aforementioned areas.
Section 13. Duty To Report – The dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist shall report all violations of the “Philippine Dental Act of 2007”, rules and regulations governing the practice of Dentistry, and this Code, as may be committed by a duly licensed dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist, or non-Dentist, which comes to their knowledge, to the appropriate chapter or affiliate society, the Board, or the Professional Regulation Commission. Alleged illegal dental practitioners must be treated with due respect in accordance to their primary human rights and must be presumed innocent until proven guilty.
Section 14. Professional Consultation and Referral – The dentist shall seek consultation or make a referral whenever the welfare of the patient requires recourse to those who possess appropriate professional expertise. The consultant shall discuss the details of the case management to the referring dentist and patient. The consultant shall observe and manage post-operative conditions and refer the patient back to the referring dentist after the management of the cause of the referral.
Section 15. Transfer of Patients – The dentist shall properly endorse his or her patient to another dentist with proper release of documents in instances such as transfer of residence or palace of work of either the patient or dentist; closure of the dental clinic; or migration of the dentist to another country, in instances wherein healthy relation between patient and dentist no longer exists, for whatever reason. Certification of Release must contain extent of work rendered and absence, or presence of obligation from the previous dentist-of-record.
15.1 The entire referral process should be properly documented and entered into the records of both dentists.
15.2 The receiving dentist, prior to managing the new case, shall, in the spirit of solidarity and collegiality, inform the previous dentist- of- record of the said intent of transfer.
15.3 In case of transfer patients, receiving dentist must generate his/her own record as baseline information for the treatment.
15.4 In case a DENTIST is unable to continue to address the needs of the patient the dentist shall convey his/her commitment to provide emergency dental care until such time that the patient can transfer to another dentist.
Section 16. Professional Opinion/Testimony– The dentist shall institute corrective treatment in case of faulty management by another dentist without criticism.
16.1 Justifiable Criticism – Every dentist shall report to the appropriate authority or professional societies instances of gross and continual faulty treatment by another dentist.
16.2 Responsible Comments – The dentist shall at all times limit comments within the nature of the referral or consultation. Dentist must refrain from criticizing the skill knowledge and experience of another dentist in the presence of a patient or elsewhere, for lack of accurate knowledge of the conditions or circumstances under which the services were rendered.
16.3 Expert Testimony – The dentist rendering expert testimony in cases of litigations shall limit comments to the case brought forth and avoid undue criticism to defame or discredit the other.
Section 17. Performance of Obligations – The dentist shall perform in good faith and with due diligence all his/her obligations arising from agreements with patients, or other persons and financing institution, or other instrumentalities, so as not to undermine the prestige of the profession.
Section 18. Testimonials – The dentist, the dental hygienist, or dental technologist shall consider the dignity of the dental profession before providing professional opinion or endorsement of professional and/or proprietary products and techniques. A dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist or any association of dentists shall not give direct testimonials or endorsement of products for the delivery of dental care.
ARTICLE III – PRACTICE MANAGEMENT
Section 19. Building a Dental Practice – The dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist shall make his/her practice known in a manner befitting a professional.
19.1 FAIR means to Build Professional Practice –The dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist shall ONLY use fair means to gain professional advancement, or shall not injure the opportunities of other dental practitioners such as false claims of one’s competency.
19.2 Title of the practice – To maintain the dignity of the profession, a dentist shall only use the term “Clinic” or “Office” in reference to the dental practice. The name of the practice shall conform to the high esteem of the profession avoiding commercialized names, which may be inappropriate to the profession.
19.3 Soliciting Patients – A dentist shall not solicit patients personally or employ his/her patients, agents, or agencies to solicit patients for him/her. He/she shall not accept/offer rebates or receive commissions for referrals; nor engage in any promotional activity which will be degrading the dignity of the profession.
Piracy of patients shall be avoided at all times. Offering “Promotional Rates” shall not be allowed in the practice of the dental profession.
Section 20. Authorized Advertising – The best and honorable means by which a dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist may make known and advance his/her reputation for skills and competence in the practice of dentistry is through his professional services to his/her patients and to the public.
20.1 Signages – The signage quality and quantity shall to be as decent and dignified as possible and shall conform with the regulations of the local government code. It shall state the nature of the dental practice and may include the name of the dentist and clinic hours. The term “X-ray”, “Gas”, “Air-abrasive”, “dental laboratory”, “air-conditioned”, or any technical terms; and misleading claims must not appear in the card, stationeries, office doors, and signboards of the dentist. When placing his/her name upon the directory board of an office building, the dentist must comply with the use of only the size of lettering regularly used by the tenants in said building.
20.2 Use of professional titles and degrees – The dentist shall use only the usual titles and academic degrees such as “Doctor”, “Dentist”, “DDS”, “DMD”, “DDM”, in connection with his/her name or signature.
20.3 Professional Stationery – A dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist shall identify himself/herself as dental practitioner only in the following manner.
20.3.1 Cards, Letterheads and Announcements – A dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist may properly utilize professional cards, recall notices to patients of record and letterheads when the style and text are consistent with the dignity of the profession.
20.3.2 Professional Cards – They must be of traditional size and type and shall not include more than the dentist’s name, academic degree, address, telephone number and office hours. If he/she confines himself/herself to the practice of a specialty, he/she may include the following; “practice limited to . . . “ announcing the specialty and nothing more.
20.3.3 Telephone and other Directories – The dentist, dental hygienist, or dental technologist may authorize the listing of his/her name in a telephone or other directory.
20.3.4 Electronically Generated Communications – The simple and dignified means of professional announcement shall apply to all electronically generated communications; Provided, it is in consonance with the provisions of the Code of Ethics.
Section 21. Announcement – The dentist shall use newspaper announcement only when opening a new clinic, or when changing location, or limiting the character of his/her practice; provided, that the newspaper announcement shall not be larger than 2 column by 2 column inches. Announcements in print, website, e-cards, and other electronic form of communication shall be posted within thirty (30) days from the date of opening. Announcement cards may be sent when there is a change in location, or an alteration in the character of practice, but to other dentists, members of the health profession, and patients-of-record.
ARTICLE IV – MEMBERSHIP IN THE DENTAL ASSOCIATION
Section 22. Membership and Financial Support – The dentist, dental hygienist, and dental technologist shall be active members of the Philippine Dental Association, (PDA) Inc., the integrated national organization of dentists, dental hygienists, and dental technologists duly recognized by the Board of Dentistry and accredited by the Professional Regulation Commission and of the bona fide Dental Chapter of the association within area of his/her practice. His/her membership requires financial support in reasonable amount fixed by the association and chapter.
Section 23. Judicial Committee – Violation of this Code and the interpretation or construction of any provision thereof may be resolved in the first instance by the Judicial Committee of the Chapter or Affiliate Society motu proprio, or at the relation of any person under oath. The PDA President shall indorse to or file with the Board of Dentistry the committee’s finding for administrative action.
ARTICLE V – DISCIPLINARY ACTION
Section 24. Sanctions – The Board, even without endorsement or complaint filed by the PDA, Inc., shall conduct the administrative investigation pursuant to PRC Res. No. 06-342, Series of 2006 upon complaint of a person, natural or juridical, or motu proprio, and shall accordingly, impose the disciplinary action of the nullification or suspension of the certificate of registration and professional identification card of the registered and licensed dentist, dental hygienist or dental technologist, or the cancellation of a temporary/special permit issued to a foreign dentist, should the respondent be found guilty under Sec. 22, Art. III of R.A. No. 9484 for violation of this Code, or Sec. 22 (a): unprofessional and unethical conduct, after due process.
Section 25. Separability Clause. – If any section or provision of this Code shall be declared, unconstitutional or invalid, such declaration shall not affect any other section or provision hereof.
ARTICLE VI – SEPARABILITY, REPEALING, EFFECTIVITY CLAUSES
Section 26. Repealing Clause. – Board Resolution No. 60, Series of 1983 is hereby repealed. All other codes, issuances, rules, regulations, or orders on the behavior of registered and licensed dentists, registered and licensed dental technologists, dental assistants or technicians in conflict with any section or provision of this Code shall be modified or repealed accordingly.
Section. 27. Effectivity. – This Board Resolution or Code shall take effect after fifteen (15) days following the full and complete publication thereof in the Official Gazette, or any newspaper of general circulation in the Philippines.