Friday, May 18, 2012
Dental Service Management companies involved in dental abuse
There is a long article at Bloomberg News detailing abuses by Dental Management Service companies. These companies are often owned by private equity firms. In this report I will just deal with one example of questionable dental work.
Last October 4 year old Isaac Gagnon got off the school bus sobbing and showed his mother where it hurt. He had steel crowns on his back teeth. There was a dental statement in his backpack that showed he had two polpotomies or baby root canals, together with crowns and ten X rays. This happened all while he was at school. He didn't need the work.
Gagnon's mother said:“I was absolutely horrified,” “I never gave them permission to drill into my son’s mouth. They did it for profit.” This case and similar cases are being looked at by federal lawmakers. The companies follow a popular business model backed by Wall Street money and taking advantage of government programs.
ReachOut Healthcare is the dental service management company that sent the dentist to Isaac's school. The company is in the portfolio of Morgan Stanley Private Equity. The company has wide reach operating in 22 different states and dealing with 1.5 million patients. These management companies are the object of a Senate inquiry. There are reports of unnecessary procedures as in Isaac's case, poor quality treatment, and even unlicensed practice of dentistry. For much more see the entire article.