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To be livid with dental practice behaviour

(26 Posts)
cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 19:03:17

So take my dd (12) for her six monthly check up tonight to be greeted by a very abrupt "come along then" woman, I explained dd needed to clean her teeth first, and as we were twenty five mins early, then would that be ok?
Woman then informs me that I need to pay for dd today as I haven't been or her other parent (um, not likely as he doesn't live anywhere near us!) within their recommended timeframe. I said I wasn't aware and they didn't put this in their letter two weeks ago reminding me of the appointment I had made? She stood firm before explaining very loudly what appointments I had cancelled (with plenty of time, due to bereavement) in front of dd, reception and the entire waiting room.
I appreciate this silly rule that they may charge for children (ahem despite claiming it via nhs) but the nature that it was dealt with left me in a right state right in the middle of the car park. I I am therefore asking AIBU to report them to the CQC, or just let it go?
(We've only been in the area just over a year)

70isaLimitNotaTarget Wed 05-Mar-14 19:25:33

Was she the Receptionist or the Dentist?

WRT the outlining the appointments you'd cancelled - were there any other people in the waiting room? It's no-one elses business and you could say it's in breach of your privacy.
The "Come along then" - she might just be abrupt?

Best bet if contact the practice manager first and see what response you get?

I had to pay £45 for my DS (14 yo) to have a white filling (he broke a corner of a tooth playing sports) and because I chose for him to have a white rather than an almalgum, I had to pay .

And one dental practice that I thankfully didn't go to (but I witnessed in the waiting room) had the Receptionist going through a patients bill, item by item (and saying his name) and commenting "You've had quite a lot of work done, do you want to pay a deposit so the bill doesn't come as a nasty shock" confused

MaidOfStars Wed 05-Mar-14 20:05:22

Annoyed at abruptness - YABU.

Discussing payment (or lack of) in the waiting room - YABU. What did you want her to do? Also, of the many many times I've waited for a dentist, I have never paid one jot of attention to those at the reception desk. Nobody noticed, you're overreacting (in my opinion).

70isaLimitNotaTarget Wed 05-Mar-14 20:16:38

Maid if someone takes a child to the dentist , why should they be spoken to in an abrupt manner?

And personally speaking, I wouldn't want to have my appointment history or anything about my treatment discussed in detail in the waiting room,

Maybe "Oh a check up, that's £20"
or "A filling, that's £40"

But if I'd cancelled, I'd have explained at the time.If it was relevant or any of their business. If you cancel on the day, you might say why. If there's plenty of notice given, then no.
( I work for NHS - not a dentist- but I would never ask a patient any details in the waiting room apart from their name. Anything else, I ask for their appointment letter or I ask them to write their DOB and full name then I check on computer)

Manners cost nothing hmm

cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 20:29:27

Thanks 70 you sum up what I was trying to get across. She explained how many I had cancelled and got third wrong, I then had to explain my nan passing away, the fact that I rang to tell them I would pay as it was short notice, they said there was no need. Clearly leaving it a year gives them justification to announce it to all and sundry in the waiting room and staff on reception. It was the dental nurse who dealt with us. I ended up saying that my dentist fear means that my daughter now won't get treated. She just looked at me like I was stupid.

cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 20:31:19

*them wrong

WooWooOwl Wed 05-Mar-14 20:32:31

YANBU, sounds like the whole thing was handled very badly, and it is worthy of a complaint.

What would they have done about payment if you'd never gone back or chosen a different dentist?

arethereanyleftatall Wed 05-Mar-14 20:33:50

You've canceled 3 appointments?

cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 20:42:01

First - nan passed away that morning
Second - blowout on way to dentist
Both times offered to pay in full for hygienist but told no need. What else should I have done?
Third - cancelled 7 days before appt.

cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 20:42:56

Woowoo I won't be going back, as I couldn't pay them at the time we were there today, they didn't see my daughter sad

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Wed 05-Mar-14 20:45:48

She should have asked you to go to the desk.

But I'm sure she had to tell you that stuff.

Unfortunately there is never anywhere really private in a dental surgery though.

I think..and I mean this kindly..your general fear of the dentist heightened the distress you felt at this experience.

cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 20:55:32

Maybe Fanjo. Plus a lovely dose of pmt, stbexh being a total crap father and I'm struggling to get through any day right now.

But she should have dealt with it better, and I could have been made aware of this charge before leaving work two hours early to be told we had wasted our time.

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Wed 05-Mar-14 20:58:14

Agreed. You should have been told in advance.

smearedinfood Wed 05-Mar-14 21:06:35

What's this with the payment and NHS treatment?

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Wed 05-Mar-14 21:08:42

I presume they meant her daughter was no longer registered NHS patient also would have to pay privately.

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Wed 05-Mar-14 21:08:55

And so. Not also

cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 21:12:15

No daughter definitely still nhs patient as only went 6 months ago, but as I went a year ago they wanted me to pay for dd to have a check up. Even though they claim it back from nhs?!

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Wed 05-Mar-14 21:13:01

I would ask for an explanation of that.

smearedinfood Wed 05-Mar-14 21:15:59

You could google for your local PALS and raise it - the claiming. It sounds a bit suspect.

cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 21:23:04

Think I will, I just presumed they were allowed to charge for children as they're private? But why have all the nhs forms to sign each time I take her?

Willdoitinaminute Wed 05-Mar-14 21:30:12

Make a complaint to the dental surgery and put in writing. There is a formal process they have to go through and the PCT/LHB will not be interested unless you have complained to the practice. However they will be interested if as you say they are charging you for a checkup that they also claim through the NHS.This is fraudulent and a serious breach. They also can't claim that it is a cancellation fee as these are also not allowed under the NHS contract.
Some practices maintain their private adult list by seeing the children under NHS as long as parents attend regularly. Again the PCT/LHB may not like this arrangement. Finally there is no such thing as registration under the current NHS contract.

cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 21:43:14

Thankyou Willdo great advice. Going to look into it properly tomorrow. Are dentists not governed by CQC now though?

Mrsmorton Wed 05-Mar-14 21:47:45

Dentists are registered with the CQC, just like they are registered with myriad other quankers bodies. No one will take your complaint on until you have been through the practice complaints process. If you go to the CQC, all they may do is inspect/reinspect the practice and they will probably do fine because the CQC don't know their arse from their elbow generally.

smearedinfood Wed 05-Mar-14 22:48:12

If it is fraud then the NHS investigate.

cls77 Wed 05-Mar-14 22:48:37

Thanks Mrs Morton I work with CQC regularly and quite agree smile

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