Dental Quota – A New Kind Of Malpractice
When you visit a dentist, you trust their training. You also trust them to do the right thing. But an investigation from USA Today highlights a problem with some dental practices. Corporate chains impose sales quotas on staff to maximize profits. These dangerous dental quota requirements put profits ahead of patient needs.
Dental Chain Locations
Certain dentist offices are part of a larger corporation. The corporation owns the dental practice. Dentists at chain dental locations are employees. Dentists must fill regular sales goals or lose their job. The sales quota is mandated by corporations such as North American Dental Group.
This behavior is a form of dental malpractice. People trust dentists. Yet, these corporate dentists are providing false diagnoses to fill the company coffers.
Dentists feel the pressure to meet dental quotas. This is causing them to conduct unnecessary procedures. One such case involves a preschooler, Gregory Lancaster. The dentist recommended seven root canals. The dentist didn’t take any X-rays to determine if this was necessary. But, Gregory’s mother trusted the dentist.
Targeting The Poor
Chain dental offices target people who normally can’t afford regular dental visits. They advertise low-cost exams and cleanings. But, once the person enters the office they are presented with a “treatment plan.” The dentist will refuse to do anything less than the treatment plan.
The dentists then charge the patients extraordinary fees to increase their profits and their investors’ equity. The dental groups urge dentists to find problems that don’t exist so they can fill their pockets.
Even the state of Pennsylvania sued one of these chain dental companies. The lawsuit charged Aspen Dental with violating consumer protection laws.
Corporate dental chains put dentists in a very difficult position. Many of these dentists are recent graduates looking to get a start in dentistry. Other dentists are more interested in increasing company profits to increase personal bonuses. This puts patients in a vulnerable and dangerous position.
Dentist offices managed by Wall Street investors conduct “morning huddles” where they discuss how to increase profits each day. This includes conducting unnecessary procedures, such as replacing fillings when it is not needed.
Negative Side Effects
Unnecessary dental work can have a ripple effect on someone’s health. Several things can occur:
- loss of teeth
- nerve damage
- sinus problems
Bad dental work can be very serious. That’s why it is imperative to find a dentist you can trust. Your dentist is responsible for your health and the aftermath of treatment performed.
Dental quota requirements encourage dentists to perform unnecessary dental procedures. This is a form of dental malpractice. Dental malpractice is like medical malpractice. It is comprised of negligence at the hands of the dental staff. This negligence causes harm to patients.
Dentists and their staff have a responsibility to meet the standard of care. If a dentist or staff is negligent, they can be held accountable in a dental malpractice lawsuit.
How to Prove Dental Malpractice
You must prove four elements of dental malpractice:
- duty of care
- prove the existence of dental/patient relationship
- breach of duty of care
- causation determining patient would not have been harmed if the duty of care achieved
Hire a Personal Injury Attorney
If dentists do not uphold the reasonable standard of care for patients, they can get sued. If you or a loved one has been harmed by a dentist from unnecessary dental procedures, call us today. We help people in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
We have a dedicated team of attorneys ready to hear your claim. Call us for a free legal consultation. We’ll answer any questions you have for free. If you have a legal claim, we can help. You don’t pay us anything until we recover money for you.