WSR 09-16-141

PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH


[ Filed August 5, 2009, 11:31 a.m. ]

Subject of Possible Rule Making: Chapter 246-225A WAC, Radiation safety and diagnostic imaging quality standards for dental facilities.

Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 70.98.050 State radiation control agency and 70.98.080 Rules and regulations -- Licensing requirements and procedure -- Notice of license application -- Objections -- Notice upon granting of license -- Registration of sources of ionizing radiation -- Exemptions from registration or licensing.

Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: The department is considering amending chapter 246-225A WAC to add criteria for use of hand-held dental X-ray equipment, modify weekly quality assurance testing, add film/screen requirements, and eliminate some safelight requirements. Other proposed changes would be editorial for clarification and consistency of existing requirements. By establishing criteria for the use of hand-held X-ray units, many dentists will have the ability to serve special needs populations who might otherwise not be adequately served. These changes would help promote better patient care in Washington without posing a higher risk of harm to the operator or patient.

Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: There are no other agencies in this state that regulate X-ray.

Process for Developing New Rule: This rule-making process will be a collaborative effort with our regulated community, the Washington State Dental Association, and other stakeholders. We propose to establish a technical advisory group to provide recommendations to the department for rule development.

Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting Andrew H. Thatcher, X-Ray Program Manager, e-mail andrew.thatcher@doh.wa.gov, phone (360) 236-3231, fax (360) 236-2266, or P.O. Box 47827, Olympia, WA 98504-7827.

August 5, 2009

Mary C. Selecky

Secretary

Washington State Code Reviser's Office