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What dentists should know about the Dental Board's disciplinary process

As a dentist, you strive to provide your patients with care that is not only effective and efficient, but compassionate. Indeed, the overwhelming majority of people in this highly selective profession take great pride in building a sizeable practice and, perhaps more significantly, earning a solid reputation in the surrounding community.

That's precisely why it can prove to be so jarring when a dentist receives notice that a complaint has been filed against them with the Ohio State Dental Board and that they may be subject to formal disciplinary measures.

In recognition of how disconcerting this can be, today's post, the first in a series, will start taking a closer look at both the complaint process and the disciplinary process.

The purpose in this endeavor is not to cause dental professionals unnecessary alarm, but rather to help familiarize them with what may seem like an arcane process.

What types of matters does the Ohio State Dental Board investigate?

The Ohio State Dental Board investigates patient complaints alleging any of the following:

  • Violations of the minimal standards of care
  • Deception, fraud or misrepresentation
  • Improper prescription, administration or dispensing of controlled substances
  • Unlicensed procedures
  • Immoral or lewd conduct
  • Impaired practice abilities
  • Failures to follow infection control protocol
  • Lapsed continuing education requirements
  • Criminal convictions
  • Miscellaneous violations

What happens when the Board receives a complaint?

It's important to understand that not every complaint will result in a disciplinary hearing. Indeed, a case will be assigned to an OSDB investigator, who will examine it and determine if an investigation is warranted.

Even if this step is taken, the OSDB investigator may still determine that there is insufficient evidence to support a finding that a violation of the Dental Practice Act has occurred.

We'll continue this discussion in our next post, taking a closer look at what happens if the OSDB investigator determines that there is sufficient evidence to refer the matter to the Board.

If you are a dentist or medical professional facing disciplinary action affecting your license and your livelihood, consider speaking with a skilled legal professional as soon as possible. 

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