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Welcome ​​to the ​Dental ​Profession in South Dakota! 

We would like to invite you to become a member of the American Dental Association, South Dakota Dental Association (SDDA) and the component society in your new area. 

The ADA, along with the SDDA, has a gradual dues rate for newly graduated dental students. The first and second years out of dental school, dues are waived. The third year out of school, dues are 25% of the full rate; fourth year out, dues are 50%; and fifth year out, dues are 75%. Full dues apply after five years out of dental school. The SDDA Annual Session fee ($175.00) is applied to all member dentists. For other dues information and questions, please contact Tia Hertel.

As a member of organized dentistry in South Dakota, you will be kept informed of what's happening in your profession and how it may affect you and your practice. Please complete the Tripartite Application and return it to SDDA, PO Box 1194, Pierre SD 57501; fax it to 605-224-9168; email Tia Hertel

For additional new dentist information see the ADA's website.

Recruitment Assistance Program

This program provides qualifying dentists an incentive payment in return for three continuous years of practice in an eligible rural community. Dentists must enter into a contract with the South Dakota Department of Health in order to participate in the program. The amount of tuition reimbursement for a qualifying dentist is equal to twice the current USD school of Medicine's resident tuition for a four-year period. Since South Dakota does not have a dental school, the USD School of Medicine's resident tuition is being used as the basis for reimbursement. The current amount is approximately $280,754.

To be eligible a Dentist must:

  • Be licensed as a Dentist in South Dakota.
  • Agree to practice full time as a general dentist in an eligible community for at least three consecutive years.
  • Agree to be a participating South Dakota medical assistance provider and to serve any individual eligible under chapter 28-6 and may  not refuse treatment to any such individual while participating in the program. 
  • Provide services to Medicaid, Medicare and State Children't Health Insurance Program patients. 
  • Not have previously participated in such program, or any other state or federal scholarship, loan repayment or tuition reimbursement program which obligates the person to provide medical services within an underserved area.

To be eligible a community must:

  • Have a population of 10,000 or less
  • Be assessed by the Department of Health to evaluate the community's need for eligible providers and its ability to sustain and support additional providers and be found eligible for participation.
  • Agree to pay a pro-rated portion of the total amount of the incentive payment:
    Under 2,500 population - 25% 
    2,500 - 5,000 population - 50% 
    Over 5,000 population - 75%
Contact Information
​Jill Dean, Office of Rural Health 
600 E Capitol
Pierre SD 57501
Phone: 1-800-738-2301 
South Dakota Department of Health

Delta Dental Loan Repayment Program

Delta Dental of South Dakota offers a Loan Repayment for Service Program for dentists who agree to serve a selected percentage of Medicaid-insured patients in their practice or a combination of seeing patients in the practice and serving in Delta's Mobile Dental Program. Loan balances must be part of the original student loan, i.e., not combined with other personal loans. Total loan repayments may range from $40,000 to $100,000 depending on the level of service commitment made by the recipient dentist. For more information contact Delta Dental of South Dakota at 1-800-627-3961 or Connie Halverson.  

Dental Shortage Areas

There are a number of areas in South Dakota that have been designated as Dental Health Profession Shortage Areas in South Dakota. Dentists locating in these areas may qualify for financial incentives including loan repayment through the National Health Service Corps. Many of these areas have an existing private practicing dentist, community health center dental clinic, or an Indian Health Service dental clinic. 

A map of Dental Health Profession Shortage Areas in South Dakota can be viewed on the SD Department of Health Web Site.
To learn about the National Health Service Corps Loan Repayment Program go to the National Health Service Corps website.