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  1. DENTAL DANGERS: How the Dental Board of California investigates dentists

    BY RACHEL COOK Californian staff writer
    Sunday, Jul 20 2014 09:00 PM

    Consumer complaints against dentists pass through a rigorous system of investigation and dental experts before the Dental Board of California makes any disciplinary move.

    In the most severe cases, the dental board turns to the California Office of the Attorney General to file an accusation -- a formal complaint -- against a dentist on the board's behalf.

    That's what happened in the case of Dr. Robert Tupac. Only a small number of complaints by patients result in accusations from the dental board, and those cases take an average of 2 1/2 years to resolve, and only after passing through a laborious and labyrinthian process.

    While the Dental Board does post records of settlements and outcomes in disciplinary cases on its website, the...

  2. DENTAL DANGERS: Peer review offers an alternative to court

    When dental work goes wrong, courts aren't the only place where patients can seek recourse. In California, patients -- and practitioners -- can bring grievances to a tribunal of dentists through peer review. It's a system of sorting out...

  3. DENTAL DANGERS: How to choose a dentist

    Whether it's for a routine cleaning or major repairs, vetting the right dentist can be trying. Dentists and dental malpractice attorneys said patients should do their homework before sitting in a dentist's chair and continue to be...

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    DENTAL DANGERS: Local dentist's invisible complaint file underscores dental board's shortcomings

    Over three decades, more than a dozen patients have claimed that one dentist’s shoddy work left them with issues varying from bone loss and excessive drooling to ill-fitting teeth or other problems. Some have stated it would take thousands...

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    DENTAL DANGERS: Patients paint different pictures of dentist's treatment

    Patients of Dr. Robert Tupac offer conflicting stories of their experiences with the courtroom-tested Bakersfield prosthodontist. The Dental Board of California, which licenses and regulates dentists, filed an accusation against Tupac in...

  6. DENTAL DANGERS: Tupac, attorneys defend him, blame Dental Board accusation on competitor

    An attorney from the Long Beach law firm Stark, Friedman & Chapman submitted the following statement on behalf of dentist Robert Tupac to The Californian on Jan. 14: "Dr. Tupac is a reputable prosthodontist and his education, credentials,...

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    Personal chef on mission to improve health

    The first time personal chef Mayra Melgar was diagnosed with gestational diabetes, she didn't give it much thought. The illness would end when the baby was born, she figured, so she ignored it. But it happened again with her second child,...

  8. State accuses local ob/gyn of 'gross negligence'

    The California Medical Board said Friday it was moving to suspend or revoke the medical license of a local obstetrician/gynecologist it accuses of "gross negligence" in the treatment of pregnant women. Dr. Rahul Sharma practices in Delano,...

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    THE PULSE: Keeping tabs on health & wellness issues

    MEDI-CAL BACKLOG: The California Department of Health Care Services is still struggling to clear out a backlog of Medi-Cal applications. The state was inundated with applications earlier this year after the Affordable Care Act expanded...

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    ASK EMILY: Will my Medi-Cal renewal get backlogged, too?

    Let's start with some good news (because everything is relative): The backlog of Medi-Cal applications that I called "monumental" last month is now merely "massive." About 600,000 people -- some of whom applied last year -- are still...

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    THE PULSE: Keeping tabs on health & wellness issues

    STARS OF HEALTH PLAN ENROLLMENT: Nonprofit health care provider Clinica Sierra Vista is having a couple of good weeks. In the past month, the chain of clinics that serves low-income patients in Kern and Fresno counties got two pieces of...

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    Motel living the only choice for many

    On a hot spring day, noticeably pregnant Cassandra Current sat on a small chair outside her Union Avenue motel room. The door to the room was open to let in what little breeze there was, but a sheet had been hung for privacy and to keep...

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    THE PULSE: Keeping tabs on health & wellness issues

    BE CAREFUL, STDS ARE RISING: The state is reminding sexually active adults to use protection during intercourse in light of a spike in sexually transmitted diseases. Last year, California had 216,000 reported STDs, the California...

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