In June 2017 a Burlington dental practice was inspected by the Halton Region health unit and resulted in a shut down of the practice due to “failure to reprocess equipment and devises used in patient care services”.
A notice was sent to 9,000 of the practice’s patients advising them to get tested for infectious diseases as a result of the IPAC lapse and when major news agencies got hold of the story, it became big news among the dental community and beyond.
And even though the Halton Region public health unit gave it’s blessing for the practice to re-open later that summer when it was found to be IPAC compliant, the fallout continues for this dentist!
In a decision handed down on March 20, 2019, Justice Morgan certified a class action proceeding against the Burlington dentist as a result of that IPAC lapse.
The class action is for negligence where the plaintiffs claim they contracted or were exposed to risk of contracting infectious diseases as a result of improperly sterilized equipment. Some 25 dental hygienists who treated patients at the dental practice during the relevant times are also being brought into the law suit and will have to defend against the law suit.
In order to ascertain who the plaintiffs will be Justice Morgan ordered that the class action be made public through newspaper advertisements as well as direct mail notices to all former patients of the practice.
We will keep you updated as the rest of this story unfolds.
If you need advice about how to stay IPAC compliant – including having the proper written IPAC policies – feel free to contact us.