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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Chapter 466
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F.S. 466.008
466.008 Certification of foreign educational institutions.
(1) The Legislature recognizes the need to ensure that graduates of foreign dental schools who have received an education which is reasonably comparable to that of similar accredited institutions in the United States and which adequately prepare their students for the practice of dentistry shall be subject to the same licensure requirements as graduates of accredited dental schools or colleges. It is the purpose of this section to provide for the evaluation of foreign dental schools and the certification of those foreign dental schools which provide an education which is reasonably comparable to that of similar accredited institutions in the United States and which adequately prepare their students for the practice of dentistry.
(2) The department shall be responsible for the certification of foreign dental schools based on standards established pursuant to subsection (4). The department may contract with outside consultants or a national professional organization to survey and evaluate foreign dental schools. Such consultant or organization shall report to the department regarding its findings in the survey and evaluation.
(3) The department shall establish a technical advisory group to review and comment upon the survey and evaluation of a foreign dental school contracted for pursuant to subsection (2) prior to any final action by the department regarding certification of the foreign dental school. The technical advisory group shall be selected by the department and shall consist of four dentists, two of whom shall be selected from a list of five recognized United States dental educators recommended by the foreign school seeking certification. None of the members of the technical advisory group shall be affiliated with the school seeking certification.
(4) Any foreign dental school which wishes to be certified pursuant to this section shall make application to the department for such certification, which shall be based upon a finding that the educational program of the foreign dental school is reasonably comparable to that of similar accredited institutions in the United States and adequately prepares its students for the practice of dentistry. Curriculum, faculty qualifications, student attendance, plant and facilities, and other relevant factors shall be reviewed and evaluated. The board, with the cooperation of the department, shall identify by rule the standards and review procedures and methodology to be used in the certification process consistent with this subsection. The department shall not grant certification if deficiencies found are of such magnitude as to prevent the students in the school from receiving an educational base suitable for the practice of dentistry.
(5) Periodic surveys and evaluations of all certified schools shall be made to ensure continued compliance with this section. Certification shall include provisional and full certification. The provisional form of certification shall be for a period determined by the department, not to exceed 3 years, and shall be granted to an institution, in accordance with rule, to provide reasonable time for the school seeking permanent certification to overcome deficiencies found by the department. Prior to the expiration of a provisional certification and before the full certification is granted, the school shall be required to submit evidence that deficiencies noted at the time of initial application have been remedied. A school granted full certification shall provide evidence of continued compliance with this section. In the event that the department denies certification or recertification, the department shall give the school a specific listing of the deficiencies which caused the denial and the requirements for remedying the deficiencies, and shall permit the school, upon request, to demonstrate by satisfactory evidence, within 90 days, that it has remedied the deficiencies listed by the department.
(6) A school shall pay a registration fee established by rule of the department, not to exceed $1,000, at the time of application for certification and shall pay all reasonable costs and expenses the department expects to incur, in an amount not to exceed $40,000, for the conduct of the certification survey.
(7) The department shall renew a certification upon receipt of a renewal application, accompanied by a fee not to exceed $500. Each fully certified institution shall submit a renewal application every 7 years. Any certification which is not renewed shall automatically expire.
History.s. 99, ch. 92-149.