Seven Tips to Ensure Your License Renewal Goes Smoothly

It is time for you and the dental hygienists that you employ to renew your licenses! Many of our members have been eagerly waiting to renew their license with the Georgia Board of Dentistry. The system is now open and you are encouraged to renew your license online.

For those dentists ready to renew their license, please visit the Georgia Board of Dentistry’s (Board) website at and click on the “Renew Online” option on the right side of the screen. Please share this information with any dental hygienists in your office so
that these individuals will also be in compliance. Please note that online renewals can often be processed within hours of submission.

To help ensure a quick and easy license renewal cycle, your Georgia Dental Association has some helpful tips for you to remember:

• Dentists must complete 40 hours of continuing education every two years and dental hygienists must complete 22 hours of continuing education. Half of those hours must be obtained at an onsite course. (You are not allowed to acquire all hours through online courses, electronic means, journal studies, etc.) Of the total hours required for a dentist, 30 hours must be clinical courses. Up to 10 hours may be obtained by providing uncompensated dental care at a public agency, not for profit agency, or association which provides dentistry to indigent patients. For dental hygienists, 15 of the total 22 hours must be clinical in nature and up to five hours may be obtained for indigent care. For every four hours of indigent care provided, dentists and dental hygienists may earn one CE hour.

• Both dentists and dental hygienists may earn up to four credit hours for completion of the CPR course required by Georgia law. CPR courses offered by the American Heart Association, American Red Cross, the American Safety and Health Institute, National Safety Council, or EMS Safety Services are acceptable to the Board. Other activities such as assisting the Board with investigations, teaching clinical dentistry, or administering clinical licensing exams may qualify for hours. Check Board Rule 150-3-.09 for details.

• Remember to maintain official documentation of course attendance for at least three years after the biennium during which the courses were taken. The Board is authorized to conduct audits to verify compliance with the continuing education requirements. If you are selected
to undergo an audit, you will need to produce official documentation of course attendance.

• Licenses expire after December 31, 2015, and if a licensee fails to renew by that date, the renewal fee increases. Failure to renew by July 1, 2016, will result in administrative revocation of a license. If a license has been revoked, a reinstatement application would need to be
submitted to the Board, along with the application fee.

• If a licensee has submitted a complete renewal application by December 31, 2015, the licensee’s license status online will change from “active” to “active-renewal pending.” This does not mean that the license has lapsed, is inactive, is deficient, or invalid in any way. Rather, this merely reflects that the licensee has submitted a timely renewal application. Please save the receipt generated after submission of a timely and complete application as additional proof of renewal during the period in which the application is reviewed.

• All dentists and dental hygienists seeking renewal this year are again required to submit census data with their renewal application. This was first required with the 2013 renewal cycle. All dentists and dental hygienists must complete and provide a census questionnaire and submit the completed questionnaire to the Board’s email address: The census form is available in the “Forms” section of the Board of Dentistry website. Completion of an Affidavit of Citizenship is not required this year unless a dentist or dental hygienist did
not submit this affidavit in 2013.

• CE requirements do apply within the first two years that a dentist is licensed in Georgia. However, a newly licensed dentist may submit as their CE hours proof of dental coursework taken within the previous two years of the date of the renewal application from their accredited
dental educational institution.

Should you have questions about licensure renewal, please contact the Board of Dentistry at (404) 651-8000 or Melana McClatchey at


GDA CE Courses

The Georgia Dental Association offers continuing courses primarily through the Annual Meeting held each summer in a resort location. For information on the 2016 slate of courses, see the Annual Meeting page. The courses for that meeting will be posted in 2016. GDA districts offer continuing education at varying times during the year. Please consult the GDA event calendar and district pages for more information.

Links to CE Course Information

The Georgia Dental Association has compiled this series of links to courses of potential interest to dentists. The GDA cannot confirm if these courses meet the particular licensure education needs of a particular professional. These links are offered as a courtesy only and should not be taken as an endorsement of the subject matter or lecturers mentioned:

Georgia Regents University CE Offerings
Georgia Academy of General Dentistry Calendar
Georgia Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons List
Northern District Dental Society Courses
Georgia Academy of Pediatric Dentistry Courses
Georgia Association of Orthodontists Meetings
Georgia Association of Periodontists Meetings
Emory University Continuing Dental Education
The Georgia Dental Society Meetings List
Hinman Dental Meeting
The Atlanta Seattle Study Club Calendar
Georgia Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry

Board of Dentistry (Board) Rules

The Georgia Board of Dentistry has rules that govern what sorts of continuing education a dentist and dental hygienist may obtain in order to renew a dental or dental hygiene license in Georgia. Please consult the Board rules at the following links:

Dental Continuing Education Rules
Dental Hygiene Continuing Education Rules


Dental Study Clubs

The Georgia Dental Association can assist Georgia study clubs with providing continuing education units to participants in courses the study clubs offer under certain circumstances. Please contact Melana McClatchey at for details.

GDA as an ADA CERP Provider

The GDA is an ADA Continuing Education Recognition Program (CERP) provider. ADA CERP is a service of the American Dental Association to assist dental professionals in identifying quality providers of continuing dental education. ADA CERP does not approve or endorse individual courses or instructors, nor does it imply acceptance of credit hours by boards of dentistry. Georgia dentists, please note that the Georgia Board of Dentistry via Board Rule 150-3-.09 accepts coursework, including home study courses, sponsored or approved by the following recognized organizations.

(a) American Dental Association / American Dental Hygienists association, and their affiliate associations and societies; [Note: This includes the GDA.]

(b) Academy of General Dentistry;

(c) National Dental Association and its affiliate societies;

(d) Colleges and universities with programs in dentistry and dental hygiene that are accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association when the professional continuing education course is held under the auspices of the school of dentistry or school of dental hygiene;

(e) CPR courses offered by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, the American Safety and Health Institute, or the National Safety Council;

(f) National and State Associations and/or societies of all specialties in dentistry recognized under Georgia law;

(g) Veterans Administration Dental Department;

(h) Armed Forces Dental Department;

(i) Georgia Department of Human Resources;

(j) American Medical Association, the National Medical Association and its affiliate associations and societies;

(k) Hospitals accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospital Organizations (JCAHO).