For immediate release November 30, 2016
EDMONTON – The investigation by the Alberta Dental Association and College (ADA&C) regarding a complaint about Dr. William Mather has determined that the matter will be referred to a Hearing Tribunal.
“The investigation conducted by the ADA&C to date is only the first step in a multi-step regulatory process under the Health Professions Act,” said Dr. Randall Croutze, Chief Executive Officer for the Alberta Dental Association and College. “The ADA&C appreciates that this is a high-profile case and people are looking for answers. The Hearing Tribunal is the next step in the process to find those answers.”
Under the Health Professions Act, the investigation by the ADA&C Complaints Director only determines if enough evidence warrants that the matter be referred to a Hearing Tribunal. The Hearing Tribunal is a public process that will hear evidence related to a complaint. The Tribunal is comprised of three dentists and a member of the public who will ultimately decide if a dentist is guilty or not guilty of unprofessional conduct.
Hearings are open to the public, although in some circumstances the Hearing Tribunal may close portions of the hearing in accordance with the Health Professions Act. The Hearing Tribunal must put their decision in writing and the ADA&C shares the decision if requested.
Dr. Croutze added, “The ADA&C takes all complaints very seriously and we have ensured that this particular investigation was completed with the utmost due diligence. We now must let the Hearing Tribunal proceed in due course, hear the evidence that has been collected and determine the facts of this particular case.”
About the Alberta Dental Association and College
The Alberta Dental Association and College is the dental regulatory authority in Alberta. The College ensures that the dental health of Albertans is advanced through safe, appropriate, available, ethical and quality dental care as an integral part of general health. Under the Health Professions Act, the Alberta Dental Association and College governs its members in a manner that protects and serves the public interest. The ADA&C establishes, maintains and enforces standards for registration and of continuing competence of its members.
Media Contact: Sarah Van Tassel
For immediate release October 31, 2016
Effective immediately, Alberta dentists will no longer be able to administer deep sedation or general anesthesia while simultaneously completing dental treatment on patients.
“The Alberta Dental Association and College regularly reviews its policies and practices,” says Dr. Randall Croutze, Chief Executive Officer for the ADA&C. “More than a year ago, we implemented a review of sedation practices across the province. While this process is ongoing, changes to our policy will take effect immediately.” On October 28, 2016, the ADA&C made a decision at its Council Meeting to amend an operational standard pertaining to deep sedation or general anesthesia during dental treatment.
“High quality dental care is integral to the continued health and safety of Albertans,” says Dr. Croutze. “Regular reviews ensure we can effectively incorporate changes to best practice guidelines along with emerging oral health evidence and is an ongoing process for the ADA&C’s Dental Facilities Accreditation Standard of Practice.”
About the Alberta Dental Association and College
The Alberta Dental Association and College is the dental regulatory authority in Alberta. The College ensures that the dental health of Albertans is advanced through safe, appropriate, available, ethical and quality dental care as an integral part of general health.Under the Health Professions Act, the Alberta Dental Association and College governs its members in a manner that protects and serves the public interest. The ADA&C establishes, maintains and enforces standards for registration and of continuing competence of its members.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – October 26, 2016
Ensuring quality outcomes in dental care
Edmonton –The Alberta Dental Association and College (ADA&C) Council has recently taken steps to enhance the complaint process by accepting all of the recommendations in a recent Alberta Ombudsman report on the fee charged for an appeal of a decision regarding a dismissed complaint.
The Alberta Ombudsman reviewed the fee for an appeal of a dismissed complaint under the ADA&C’s complaint review process. The Ombudsman’s Report provided specific recommendations for the ADA&C along with other health professional regulatory colleges to ensure a fee does not pose a barrier for low income Albertans.
“Accessibility, transparency and accountability are integral to delivering quality health services and maintaining the community’s trust,” says Dr Randall Croutze, Chief Executive Officer for the Alberta Dental Association and College “A key component of ensuring quality dental care outcomes is having a process that enables patients to resolve concerns with practitioners.”
As of September 2016, the fee charged to an applicant seeking a review by the ADA&C Complaints Review Committee has been reduced from $500 to $200.
Low-income Albertans can also apply to have the fee waived by the ADA&C. The organization will provide a waiver application form with every dismissal decision issued to complainants and detailed information is also included on the ADA&C website. The waiver form is based on the waiver process available in the courts of Alberta.
Under the Health Professions Act, the Government of Alberta requires all health profession colleges to have a system in place to address patient complaints. The legislation also gives all health profession colleges the authority to charge a fee for appeals of dismissed complaints. There is no fee to file a formal complaint and to complete an investigation about a dentist with the Alberta Dental Association and College.
“The ADA&C takes all patient concerns seriously and works hard to ensure majority of those are resolved between the patient and their dentist,” says Croutze. “In our experience, 80-85% of concerns are effectively addressed by encouraging discussions directly with a dentist before a formal complaint is ever made.”
If communication is not possible or becomes unproductive, patients can initiate a formal complaints process. ADA&C’s goal is to provide a fair and thorough complaint process that delivers decisions in a timely manner.
Once a formal complaint has been fully investigated, the ADA&C notifies those involved whether further actions have been taken to address the matter or if the complaint has been dismissed.
The appeal process involves assembling a complaint review committee comprised of three dentists and one member of the public. That committee will review the circumstances involving the complaint and render a decision to require further investigation, to dismiss the complaint or to send the complaint to a hearing for which there is no fee.
“The vast majority of patients have successful dental visits. But when concerns arise, we encourage patients and dentists early on to contact each other directly and discuss issues,” says Croutze. “Generally, they have the greatest knowledge about the situation and are in the best position to seek an appropriate resolution.”