South East Wales

Hundreds take Cardiff dentist hygiene tests after alert

Splott Road Dental Surgery
Image caption Splott Road Dental Surgery is now under new ownership

Hundreds of patients will be tested after a Cardiff dentist re-used equipment that should have been binned.

Mark Roberts was dismissed after a whistleblower claimed he re-used syringe cartridges and root canal surgery files.

He had worked at Splott Road Dental Surgery from 1989 to February 2015.

Cardiff and Vale University Health Board said 450 out of 3,000 patients have been in touch following an appeal and 252 are to have blood tests.

The health board said the tests are for those deemed to be at a higher risk of infection or to give peace of mind to those who are worried.

However, patients have been assured there is a very low risk of the transfer of infections like hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV.

The dentist said he deeply regretted "lapses" at his practice, as health bosses contacted all former patients.

The General Dental Council confirmed Mr Roberts was suspended for 18 months in April, and this has been "continued" until October 2016 due to "concerns about his cross-infection controls".

Splott Road Dental Surgery is now under new ownership.

The claims of poor infection control include:

  • That Mark Roberts re-used the cartridges of local anaesthetic syringes. These should have been thrown away after a single use. It is understood he did not re-use the actual needle.
  • That he also re-used endodontic files which are used for root canal surgery. These should have been disposed of after being used by each patient.

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