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Alternative health providers push for fewer licensees on boards

Since the February Supreme Court antitrust ruling that disallowed a North Carolina dentist board from issuing cease and desist orders on teeth-whitening establishments run by non-dentists, there’s been an uptick in complaints that licensing boards employ anti-competitive tactics. This month, the Alliance for Natural Health USA, an Atlanta-based alternative health group, issued letters to more than a dozen state Attorneys General, calling for an end to “all monopolistic policies and regulations related to nutritional advice.”

The Alliance singled out the Iowa Board of Dietetics as an example of how many boards are controlled by a member majority of active, registered dietitians. Such a composition, according to the alliance, negates the neutrality and objectivity a board is supposed to have, and without proper regulation, allows for autocratic activity to take place. The Iowa board has shut down numerous establishments without proper cause, the Alliance charges.

While many similar allegations such as the one made by the Alliance have been averred against licensing boards since the February Supreme Court ruling, there has been push-back by some state courts. On June 5, the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that only licensed dentists are allowed to provide teeth-whitening services, seemingly contradicting the sentiment held in February by the federal high court.

Read more on the Alliance’s allegations here.