Access Clearinghouse

History & Purpose

The American Association of Dental Boards, formerly known as the American Association of Dental Examiners, was founded in 1883, is composed of state dental boards, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands, as well as both past and present members of those boards, board administrators and board attorneys.  

One of the problems which challenges state boards of dentistry is assuring the public that dental practitioners currently licensed in their state, and practitioners who move from state to state, practice in accordance with state dental practice acts. In response to the resolution, the AADB Central Office sent out a request to all state boards asking for participation in the Clearinghouse.  As a result, a manual system of data collection and compilation was implemented. In 1989, the AADB recognized the need for computerizing and enhancing the Clearinghouse.  This need was pursued and the AADB was awarded a contract by the Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration to meet these needs.  

The purpose of the Clearinghouse is to provide a central register where the final actions taken by the boards of dental examiners may be recorded.  Information indicating whether or not an individual has been involved in a board action may then be obtained on request from the AADB.  The Clearinghouse does not currently provide malpractice information or verify credentials.

Only practitioners who have been sanctioned are listed in the AADB’s Clearinghouse for Board Actions.  Customers submit queries by providing practitioner names and their associated biographical data to the Clearinghouse.  These inquiries are matched against the information in the database.  Any errors in biographical information submitted by the customer will adversely affect the outcome of the search.

Clearinghouse information is intended to serve as a “flagging system”.  Please note that any information provided to your organization must be kept confidential and cannot be released, directly or indirectly, to any other person, party, entity, or organization.  An organization may report that a practitioner through the AADB’s Clearinghouse and that there was no information on the practitioner in the Clearinghouse at the time of the report.  If there is a report on a practitioner, an organization must directly contact the reporting agency in order to obtain current information from the primary source.  Information may be released to your clients only if allowed by the primary source.  Under no circumstances, however, may your organization provide AADB reports to other clients or to other locations of your organization.  In order for an organization to screen through the AADB, a valid contract must be in place between that organization and the AADB.

Who is authorized to use Clearinghouse?

The Clearinghouse will accept requests for information from state boards of dentistry, federal agencies, contracted clients, and practitioners who request a self-query.

How to become an eligible entity? 

To access the AADB Clearinghouse for Board Actions query system, a valid contract must be in place between the organization and the AADB.  

For more information regarding a contract and fees, please contact our central office at [email protected].

If approved by the AADB, a package will be mailed which includes a contract, fee schedule, and other pertinent information.  


What types of practitioners are found in your Clearinghouse?
Practitioners having a DDS or DMD degree, Dental Hygienists and Dental Assistants.

What types of information will I receive on individuals found in your Clearinghouse?
Any actions taken by the state dental boards and the armed forces.

Is it mandatory that these agencies report to the AADB?
No, each of the reporting entities provides information to us voluntarily.

How long has the AADB been collecting the information in its Clearinghouse?
Much of the information dates back to the mid-1980s.

What is the difference between the AADB and the National Practitioner Data Bank?
The AADB is a not-for-profit association that opened for business in 1883 and has been reporting sanctions against practitioners since 1988.  The NPDB, a government agency, began collecting and reporting sanctions in September 1990.  Also, the AADB reviews each query to verify the information prior to mailing the customer a report.


How do I submit the information?
There are two methods to submit your requests. The first is either by mail or email (i.e., manual submission) and the second is by using the AADB On-Line Query System.  

What information do I need to provide you in order for you to search for a practitioner?
You will need to provide us with the practitioner’s full name, date of birth, school of graduation, year of graduation, and type of degree.  

If I submit requests manually, how many names may I submit on one list?
You may include as many names as you wish on each submission.

Are handwritten submissions acceptable? 
If you do not have access to a typewriter, word processor, or computer, you may hand-write your submission but always allow extra time for a handwritten list as it is more difficult to enter and proof.

May I fax you my list and have you fax me the results for a quicker turnaround?
Requests can be faxed to us. Because of the confidentiality of the information in our reports, however, we cannot fax our reports to you. We will be glad to overnight mail if you provide your billing number.  


How long will it take for me to receive results?
For manual submissions, a report showing the result will leave our office no more than ten business days from the date of receipt.  For online submissions, preliminary results will be available within minutes. Preliminary results will show that there was either no match for a practitioner or that further research is required. The final results for those practitioners who required further investigation will be sent to you within 10 business days. 

May I share your report with sister organizations?
You may not pass our reports to any entity, department, or individual outside your office. You may indicate, however, that the practitioner was searched in our Clearinghouse and not found to have actions. When the database shows an action taken against a practitioner, your use of the information is subject to your verification of the information with the source agency.