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March 2nd 2012

Medical Negligence

Dentist Faces New ‘Neglect’ Claims

Sarah Scully

Sarah Scully

Solicitor, Clinical Negligence

Dentist Faces New ‘Neglect’ Claims

A retired Leeds dentist, who has faced previous claims of neglect, is being investigated again after more patients alleged he failed to offer them adequate dental care. Several patients claim Ian England gave their teeth a clean bill of health, only to be told by their new surgery that urgent dental treatment was required. In 2009 the General Dental Council heard how England left a patient needing seven replacement fillings after years of neglect. England, who worked from the Greenhill Dental Surgery in Bramley, failed to provide the woman with ‘basic ‘care for four years and missed serious tooth decay.

A retired Leeds dentist, who has faced previous claims of neglect, is being investigated again after more patients alleged he failed to offer them adequate dental care.

Several patients claim Ian England gave their teeth a clean bill of health, only to be told by their new surgery that urgent dental treatment was required.
In 2009 the General Dental Council heard how England left a patient needing seven replacement fillings after years of neglect. England, who worked from the Greenhill Dental Surgery in Bramley, failed to provide the woman with ‘basic ‘care for four years and missed serious tooth decay.

Other charges relating to a 13-year-old girl were also referred to in the 2009 hearing.
Following the 2009 General Dental Council hearing England was allowed to keep his job, but subject to stringent conditions including working under the close supervision of a mentor. It is believed England retired shortly afterwards.

But a firm of leading personal injury lawyers has now revealed it is currently investigating further allegations of neglect against England from patients including a 10-year-old girl. The patients all claim dental problems which should have been spotted by England were only noticed when they saw new dentists after England’s retirement.

Medical negligence specialist Sarah Scully, from Hudgell Solicitors, explains: “We’re currently handling four cases involving patients who had attended England’s surgery for up to 20 years. It appears that during their regular six-monthly check-up no problems were identified.

“When they started visiting a new dentist, issues including gum disease and tooth decay were quickly identified which should have been picked up sooner.
“All four cases are at different stages, but a common issue to them all is identifying whether or not England had indemnity insurance, which helps us in pursuing compensation.”

Dr England has advised Hudgell Solicitors that he did have insurance cover whilst practising and the lawyers are now contacting the insurers.

However, patients are advised to ensure that their dentists are adequately covered to avoid any potential pitfalls in the future.

Sarah Scully adds: “Until problems arise, patients never consider the issue of insurance. But by that time it can often be too late and cause all sorts of problems and delays in securing compensation”.

“We are currently conducting investigations to clarify the issue of Dr England’s indemnity insurance.”

If a dentist does not have insurance and treatment is needed to correct mistakes, the patient will have to pay for this rather than being able to recover the fees from insurers.  Patients can end up paying twice: once for the negligent treatment and then again to put it right.

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