Been to the dentist lately and come away with something you didn’t expect? Dental malpractice is a real issue faced by patients in the chair.
In order to practice law, accounting, medicine and dentistry, among other professions, the dentist is required to have a license to practice in a certain state. This isn’t just a piece of paper that says nice words and welcome the dentist to the world of dentistry, this is a license that means that subject to heavy duty rules and regulations, they are allowed to practice their trade. Professional conduct is high on the list of things dentists are required to have.
Most states also have a licensing board that investigates complaints laid against dentists for various forms of negligence and malpractice. When in doubt about the rules and regulations in a certain state, it’s time to speak to a “licensed” and skilled medical malpractice attorney to find out the lay of the land. Knowing what rights a plaintiff has is a smart move. Even if the person inquiring suspects they may have been a victim of dental malpractice but are not sure, ask questions and find out how to proceed.
Generally speaking, when a licensed dentist performing his job does something that is considered to be below the accepted standards of good and prudent dental practice, they may be charged with malpractice. “In other words, if the dentist messes up and does something they had no business doing, such as removing the wrong tooth, breaking a patient’s jaw, neglecting periodontal disease and not informing the patient, or cutting the patient’s tongue, the patient may be able to file a dental malpractice lawsuit,” indicated Stephen Ozcomert, an Atlanta personal injury and malpractice attorney.
Typically, dental malpractice charges tend to fall into several categories, and unfortunately, some of the “mistakes” a fairly common; hardly something to be enthused about. Most of the charges include gross negligence or incompetence; refusing service to someone based on discrimination (race, color, creed etc.); practicing beyond the normal scope of dentistry; breaching patient confidence; neglecting a patient in an emergency situation; doing unauthorized or unnecessary dental work; working while drunk or under the influence of drugs and/or physically or sexually abusing patients.
“That’s quite the list and I hasten to add that not all dentists should be tarred and feathered just because another dentist committed some of those malpractice red flags. Nonetheless, talking to a medical malpractice attorney is a good idea to find out what your rights are,” Ozcomert suggested.
“Be aware that if a patient is on Medicaid, there have been a large number of cases of dentists filing false reports – to out and out Medicaid fraud. All the more reason to talk to an attorney if you have questions about your dental procedure,” said Stephen Ozcomert, an Atlanta personal injury and malpractice attorney.
The bottom line when dealing with dental malpractice is that someone needs to be held accountable for the negligence and the harm that it caused. One way to ensure the perpetrator is held accountable is to file a dental malpractice lawsuit.
To learn more visit http://www.ozcomert.com.
The law offices of Stephen M. Ozcomert specialize in personal injury, accidents, and malpractice law in Atlanta Georgia.