Negligent Dental Care

Published: 21st July 2017

Whenever you seek medical aid there is a certain standard in service to be expected. Mistakes do happen, especially in a job as demanding as a medical professional, it is simple human nature. However, this doesn’t mean that they are excusable. And when mistakes happen, and people are the victims of clinical negligence, it is only fair that some form of compensation is awarded.

This does not only apply to general practice and hospitals, it also extends to dental care, which very few people realise.

In a recent incident one writer and journalist wrote of her experiences at the hands of dental negligence.

It is thought that part of the problem is caused by the pricing structure of NHS dentistry. The set pricing structure is as follows:

Band 1: Priced at £18.50, this band includes general examinations, scale, polish and advice for good dental health practices that you can do for yourself at home.
Band 2: For £50.50, patients receive the treatments covered in Band 1 as well as root canal work or tooth extractions.
Band 3: At £219, this band includes procedures from the previous two bands with the addition of crown, bridge and denture fittings.
However, some people argue that this structure is flawed, as it doesn’t take into consideration the time treatments take.

For example, a root canal treatments and tooth extraction cost the same amount to the patient, but a tooth extraction takes considerably less time. This may encourage dentists to carry out tooth extractions when they are not necessary.

Which is exactly what happened to a victim named Ian Lisle, who had 11 teeth extracted, when a root canal would have solved the issue. ‘It would have taken [my dentist] much longer to carry out root canal treatment,’ he confirms. ‘[But] extracting my teeth could be done far more quickly.’

He was eventually awarded £42,000 compensation, which he spent on getting 8 new implants to replace the teeth which were removed.

There is also a common practice of dentists advising patients to have private treatments when an NHS one would do. For example, one patient was told that they would receive a better standard of tooth cleaning from a private treatment than an NHS one, but at a cost of £70 more.

If you feel you have been the victim on dentistry negligence, or medical negligence in general, then give Liddy’s a call on 01226 731 314.