Improper Infection Prevention Controls in the Dental Practice Can be the Difference Between Life and Death

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infection prevention controls in the dental office

A New Jersey oral surgeon has recently been accused of improper infection prevention controls in the dental practice, which lead to 15 cases of bacterial endocarditis, a heart infection, including one patient who subsequently died from the infection. It was later reported that the bacterial organism was likely introduced into the patient’s bloodstream during the intravenous sedation prior to the oral surgery performed at the office.

Many news articles (such as ones posted by Dr. Bcuspid and Fox News) and the class action lawsuit filed by Lynch Law Firm details the specifics of the suspensions and lawsuits pursued against the doctor.

The investigations found that the facility’s infection prevention practices did not follow the guidelines provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These violations of CDC guidelines likely lead to the spread of the infections.

Some of the facilities infractions included:

  • The use of a single vial of medication for multiple patients
  • Incorrectly storing syringes and using unwrapped, unsterilized syringes
  • The failure to use sterilized products
  • Poor hygiene practices by the staff

Many of these violations are preventable by installing proper infection prevention protocols in the dental practice, which includes the following:

Let us Help You Set up a Proper Infection Prevention Plan for Your Practice

HealthFirst can help your office install a proper infection prevention plan, which includes:

Contact a HealthFirst Compliance Counselor so they can help you install a proper infection prevention plan in your office.

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Dr. Donald Cohen, a trusted figure and key opinion leader, has been a licensed and practicing dentist for over 30 years. Additionally, Dr. Cohen has 20 years of teaching experience at Columbia University SDOS, and 20 years as an Attending Dentist at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in New York City. With his many years of experience in the field and in the classroom, “Dr. Don” is an expert in the areas of dental compliance, regulations, and best practices.

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