Thursday, June 21, 2012

The Morning Drill: June 21, 2012

Robin Lockwood, DDS

Good Thursday morning!

On to today's dentistry and health headlines:

An Oklahoma City dentist has been charged in a complaint of committing health care fraud

An Oklahoma City dentist has been charged with committing health care fraud, authorities announced Wednesday.

Robin Lockwood, 44, is accused of defrauding Medicaid by submitting claims for dental services she didn't provide, according to a news release issued by U.S. Attorney Sandford Coats.

The news release states the fraud occurred from July 2007 through December 2010 while Lockwood was employed by Ocean Dental, 1610 SW 74. The clinic provides dental care to Medicaid-eligible children and submits claims for reimbursement to the Oklahoma Health Care Authority. The dentists are reimbursed based on the treatment notes they write for each patient.

Lockwood was charged on a complaint that she submitted notes about treatments she hadn't done. Relying on Lockwood's treatment notes, Ocean Dental submitted claims for reimbursement to Medicaid and paid her a percentage of those reimbursements.

If convicted, Lockwood faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

The father and daughter behind Father Daughter Dentistry

Spend some time with Michael Robinson and Molly Weiandt, and you’ll wonder why there aren’t more father-daughter businesses. In the eight years they’ve worked together the two swear they have never had a major argument.

“No, I’m serious, in eight years we haven’t argued about anything,” Weiandt said.

Robinson and Weiandt are the owners of the appropriately named Father Daughter Dentistry in Anderson.

“We have a lot of fun together,” Robinson said.

Robinson said Weiandt first started working for him while she was in high school, as a dental assistant, however he never thought she’d go to dental school.

“I had no intention of going to dental school whatsoever,” Weiandt said.

It was during her sophomore year at Indiana University that Weiandt gave it a second thought. Initially she was studying chemistry, and had aspirations of working for Eli Lilly, but as she got into higher-level courses, she discovered it wasn’t the life for her.

“I could not spend all day long in a lab mixing chemicals and not talk to people. It’s not going to work out for me, I’m a real people person,” Weiandt said.

Dentists Michael Robinson and Molly Weiandt

New NH law expands dental hygienists' duties

New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch has signed a new law that expands the scope of services that dental hygienists can perform.

SB 284 allows certified public health dental hygienists who work in schools, hospitals, and other public settings or who deliver care to homebound patients to perform dental x-rays, offer nutritional counseling, and place temporary fillings in teeth.

States battle ADA over nation's teeth

A proposed nationwide model curriculum has been developed to train dental therapists. It is being pushed by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (of cereal fame) and the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation. The American Dental Association is not pleased, either with the proposed program or its curriculum.

The proposed model and curriculum to train dental therapists is the result of a growing national discomfort with lack of dental care for both adults and children.

In Alaska in 2005, the state perceived a growing crisis and decided to try to solve the problem by establishing a new class of dental practitioner, the dental therapist. Under the program, dental therapists will be able to fill cavities, pull teeth and even perform root canals.

The University of Minnesota has had a program in place for years and even offers a master's degree in dental therapy. The university says that there is plenty of room for both dentists and dental therapists. The ADA is not buying their argument and is not so accommodating.

Since Alaska entered the fray, at least four other states - California, New Hampshire, Oregon and Connecticut - have followed suit and have or are in the process of developing training programs for dental therapists.

Enjoy your morning!

No comments:

Post a Comment