General Dental Council Prove Desmond D'Mello Allegations

Dental Misconduct Causes Biggest Patient Recall In NHS History

16.08.2016

Saffron Otter, Press Officer | 0114 276 4666

Dental negligence experts at Irwin Mitchell say the treatment of patients was extremely concerning after a panel finds a dentist who committed a string of offences to spark the “biggest NHS patient recall in history.”

Thousands of patients were tested for blood-borne viruses after the secret filming of dentist Desmond D’Mello revealed poor levels of cleanliness in his surgery. 

Out of the 56 allegations against Mr D’Mello, all but one were found proven by a General Dental Council (GDC) misconduct hearing, and will now decide whether he will be struck off. 

Secret filming at Mr D’Mello’s Daybrook Dental Practice, Nottingham in 2014 prompted the recall of 22,000 patients.  

More than 4,000 of these patients were tested for viruses including hepatitis and HIV. 

The GDC found 55 allegations against him were proven, including failing to change gloves between patients. Working alongside Mr D’Mello was dental nurse, Caroline Surgery, whom admitted more than 20 allegations against him. 

Ms Surgery said she was scared to challenge Mr D’Mello in case she lost her job, the panel was told. She said: “He would comment if somebody changed their gloves all the time.” 

The panel also heard that Mr D’Mello insisted on seeing “massive amounts of patients”, sometimes up to four in 15 minutes, making “cross-infection control impossible.” 

Mr D'Mello is not giving evidence at the hearing but in a statement to the panel said he was in "total shock" at the allegations, which he accused the NHS of handling in a "humiliating" manner.

Out of the patient recalls, 4,526 patients were tested, and five were found to have hepatitis C, according to NHS England. None of which were diagnosed with hepatitis B or HIV.

Daybrook Dental Practice is now under a new name and ownership. 

Christina Gardiner, medical negligence expert specialising in dental negligence claims, said: 

Expert Opinion
"We are very concerned to hear about the standard of dental treatment that Dr D’Mello provided to these patients.

“Not only has this poor practice caused the ‘biggest patient recall in NHS history’ which costs time and money, but more importantly, he has put a significant number of patients at risk of contracting life-threatening diseases, from someone that they would have trusted.

“We encourage any patients that may have been affected to undergo testing as recommended and to seek a general dental review with a new certified dentist.

“We hope that this incident will promote safe practices in NHS England to prevent instances like this happening again.”
Christina Gardiner, Solicitor

If you have suffered as a result of dental negligence, our medical negligence solicitors could help you to secure compensation. View our Dental Negligence Compensation page for more information.