In Tulsa, Oklahoma, hundreds of patients of an oral surgeon arrived at a medical clinic yesterday. They were anxious to learn whether they had been infected as a result of a dentist’s unsanitary surgical routines.
According to Tulsa County Health Department, nearly 7,000 patients of Doctor Scott Harrington, are being contacted via official public health direct mail. More than 400 showed up at the North Regional Health and Wellness Center Saturday morning, many standing in a pouring rainstorm, to await testing for Hepatitis and HIV viruses.
The bizarre case began when health department investigators discovered a number of safety violations at Harrington’s dental clinics – one in Tulsa and another in Owasso. What followed was the Oklahoma State Dentistry Board filing a 17-count complaint against the doctor. According to the complaint, Harrington routinely used the same needles on multiple drug containers after being used on multiple patients.
Upon inspection of the clinic, investigators found numerous serious violations of the health code, including infectious disease instruments being rusty, and the pressurized instrument sterilizer had not been tested and certified in over five years.
Investigators also found that expired medications were being used on patients, and that Harrington allowed dental assistants to draw up and administer sedatives, which is a gross violation of the law.
Harrington faces a medical license revocation hearing on April 19.
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