Malpractice suit filed against former Wisconsin dentist
Andy Mancini, who operated Hudson, Wisc.-based La Petite Dentistry until it closure in April, is being sued in Washington County District Court by two St. Croix County women who allege he was negligent in his services for their children. Twin Cities attorney Brent Schafer, who is representing Rebecca Viebrock and Lisa Vansomeren on behalf of their children, says he has been contacted by more than 70 other families and a class action “is a possibility.” Mr Mancini is accused of unnecessary tooth extractions, unnecessary caps placed on teeth and improper anesthetic treatment.
Malpractice suit founders on insufficient expert testimony
A Texas appeals court has thrown out a dental malpractice suit, saying the plaintiff's medical expert provided insufficient expert testimony during a deposition. Tonika Chatman had part of her jaw removed in the aftermath of an allegedly botched tooth extraction procedure. The three-judge Court of Appeals panel affirmed summary judgment in favor of Dr. Sidney Fowler.
Ransomware, data theft, and dentistry
Ian Furst and Ian Thornton-Trump takes a look at how the "good faith efforts" by the healthcare community, including dentistry, to use information technology to increase the speed of care and portability of patient information has left it exposed to ransomware and data theft attacks. They underscore that every dental practice needs to adopt secure storage of data and a commercial grade firewall (“wildly unpopular with employees") which limits which websites can be visited and which should be part of the network structure of every practice.
Oral Health Journal
Disruption and 401(k) plans
Dentistry iQ's Josh Robbins takes a look at how disruptive technologies may be poised to impact the 401(k) plan in the dentistry space, noting that "For most dentists or staff, the 401(k) is something to 'set and forget' . . . a feeding trough for brokers, mutual fund companies, record keepers, and a host of other unnecessary middlemen. The net result is often hidden and excessive fees that erode the accounts of dentists and staff who are saving their hard-earned money."
Using third-party financing efficiently
Kevin Henry writes about the importance for dental professionals of knowing how well third-party financing is working for a practice. He notes it is estimated that, with insurance use and cash payments, about 20% of a typical practice's patient base would benefit greatly from third-party financing.
Dental professionals and hearing-impaired patients
Linda Rowe writes on how dental professionals should go about communicating with hearing-impaired patients, noting also that dentists are well-placed for interventions outside dental hygiene. She advises dentists: "Whether the patient in your chair is aware of it or not, you will be working with hearing loss during your work day. For individuals 12 years and older in the United States, nearly 1 in 8 has bilateral hearing loss, and nearly 1 in 5 has a unilateral or bilateral hearing loss . . . [and] the prevalence of hearing loss is expected to rise because of the aging of the population." The author also reminds dental professionals to protect their own hearing, noting a National Hearing Test (NHT) that can be done using a landline and costing only $5.
Hope for an efficient model for charitable dental care
ADA News reports on a two-day visit by ADA President Joseph P. Crowley to a Dan Diego project which may offer an efficient model for charitable dental care that could be replicated throughout the country. The University of California San Diego Student-Run Free Dental Clinic Project aims to increase access to dental services for the underserved and offers no cost preventive care and general restorative care and specialty services including endodontics, oral surgery, orthodontics, periodontics, prosthodontics and pediatric dentistry. Dr. Crowley said "The volunteers [at the project] are filling the void everyone knows is there in an innovative way that is life-changing for many of the patients."
New material could regenerate dental enamel
A study published in Nature Communications details the development of a new way to grow mineralised materials which could regenerate hard tissues including dental enamel and bone. Dr. Sherif Elsharkawy, the first author of the study from Queen Mary's School of Engineering and Materials Science in London, said: "This is exciting because the simplicity and versatility of the mineralisation platform opens up opportunities to treat and regenerate dental tissues. For example, we could develop acid resistant bandages that can infiltrate, mineralise, and shield exposed dentinal tubules of human teeth for the treatment of dentin hypersensitivity."
U.K. dentists advocate for HPV vaccines for boys
Dental organizations in the U.K. are urging the government to extend to boys a nationwide program which already sees all adolescent girls receive the human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine. HPV is linked to one in 20 cases of cancer in the United Kingdom and HPV-caused throat cancers are among the hardest to diagnose and treat and are twice as likely to affect men as women, says the British Dental Association (BDA). Dr. Mick Armstrong, chair of the BDA, said: "There is no logic or fairness in only protecting half of the population against this terrible virus. It is time for a universal vaccination program . . . The current girls-only policy is costing lives and leaving 400,000 more boys needlessly unprotected with every passing year.”
Dentist works magic for patient
A New Jersey dentist has added a little magic to dental visits for children. A video showing Dr. Eyal Simchi, who works at the Riverfront Pediatric Dentistry in Elmwood Park, N.J., holding a glowing ball in his hands, making it disappear and reappear from hand-to-hand and pretending to snatch it out from under a young patient’s chin, has gone viral.
CBS New York