Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Morning Drill: February 14, 2012

Emmanouil Parisis, aka Neil McClaren, Dentist Who Faked His Own Death

Happy Valentine's Day!

On to today's dentistry and health headlines:

Dentist who faked his own death faces hearing

A DEBT-RIDDEN dentist who faked his own death in a £1.8 million life insurance scam is to appear at a disciplinary hearing of the General Dental Council later this month, accused of falsifying documents to obtain work in Britain.

Emmanouil Parisis was jailed for five years in March last year after he admitted forging documents to show he had died in a car crash while on holiday in Jordan and fraudulently claiming a total of £1.85 million in life insurance policies.

Following his fake death, he started a new life in Scotland under the name of Neil McLaren, working as a dentist in Peterhead, Aberdeenshire.

Plymouth Crown Court was told Parisis faked his own death because he was £395,000 in debt and was about to be barred from working as a dentist under his old identity after a string of complaints.

Accreditation issues shut down Calif. dental hygiene program

A dental hygienist training program in California abruptly shut down last week, leaving its students -- many of whom had prepaid up to $45,000 for the three-year program -- wondering what to do next.

On February 7, students in the dental hygiene program at the Institute of Medical Education (IME) received a letter stating that the institute would no longer be able to continue the program because its accreditation status was in jeopardy.

"I am so frustrated and depressed," said one first-year student who asked to remain anonymous. "My classmates and I get together and cry."

The school, which has campuses in Oakland and San Jose, offers certificate programs in vocational nursing, medical assisting, and other health-related fields, as well as associate degrees in dental hygiene. The three-year dental hygiene program included 18 months of prerequisites and 18 month of a focused clinical program.

IME officials say that because the school's accrediting body, the Western Association of School and Colleges (WASC), has withdrawn its participation with the U.S. Department of Education (DoE), IME can no longer offer the dental hygiene program and has lost its eligibility to receive Title IV financial aid.

"Per the Commission on Dental Association (CODA), in order to operate a dental hygiene program, an institution must be accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency that is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education," Khoi Lam, program manager at the IME Oakland campus, wrote in the letter. "In light of these new obstacles, the Institute of Medical Education will not be able to start a future cohort for the Dental Hygiene Program."

CODA, an agency of the ADA, is the national accrediting body for dental and allied dental education programs.

'Model' dental program proves painful for kids

Almost two decades ago, the state made Sacramento County the testing ground for a new model of delivering dental care to poor children. Officials envisioned a managed care system that would control costs and improve children's ability to see a dentist.

Today that model persists – but state data show that the county has consistently produced one of California's worst records for care.

Critics – including local dentists, county officials, school nurses and family members – contend that Sacramento's special model of care forces many children to wait months or even years before receiving needed treatment, even if they have broken or rotting teeth, or are in so much pain that they can't chew.

What’s the Best Way to Help Teen Girls Control Their Weight?

Remember being a teenager? You probably wanted to spend as little time with your parents as possible. So it’s not surprising that the usual weight-control strategy used for younger kids — counseling and advice delivered to the whole family at once — isn’t so appealing to adolescents.

Researchers at Kaiser Permanente wanted to test out an approach aimed specifically at teen girls: one that involved peer meetings, with parents meeting separately, and that also tried to avoid messages that might encourage eating disorders.

In a paper published online in Pediatrics, the researchers report some early, but modest, success with the program. “It’s a first step” says Lynn DeBar, lead author of the study and a researcher with the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research.

Enjoy your Valentine's Day!

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