State Dental Council warns illegal dental clinic operators
At a time when dental care in government hospitals across Kashmir Valley is in shambles due to inadequate facilities, the dental quackery in Kashmir is also on rise, while the authorities are doing nothing to put checks on it.
In many areas of Srinagar, the dental quacks are working without the required licenses and qualification, putting lives of hundreds of patients at risk.
Recently, an outsider street dental quack was exposed in Batamaloo. The fake doctor was using rusty, dirty and unsterilized metal equipments to treat people with dental ailments.
Batamaloo residents said there are many fake dentists, operating in markets and health authorities have failed to take action against them.
A group of people at Magarmal Bagh complained that the area has many fake dentists and most of them treat patients during evening hours.
“They have drug shop hoardings outside but inside they have dental machines and treat patients. They are using unsterilized equipments,” said Ghulam Mohammad, a local.
People at Karan Nagar while expressing surprise said that mushrooming of dental labs have left people in confusion and they don’t know who is fake and who is real.
“There is always a delay in treating patients in government hospitals. When we go to Government Dental College Srinagar for consultations they give long dates for treatment,” said Mohammad Shafi of Budgam, waiting eagerly at a private dental clinic at Karan Nagar.
“We are compelled to visit the private dental clinics,” the elderly man said.
Health experts believe that there is a dearth of dental surgeons in hundreds of government hospitals and health centres across Kashmir.
An official in the health department said the dental care system has remained a casualty as patient hailing from far off places have to travel longer distances, and spend large sums for dental consultations.
“The practice is rampant in the state. We have to understand it. The State Dental Council was in shambles. It is time to take action,” said the official.
According to official figures, over 400 persons have been tested hepatitis B and C positive in south Kashmir’s Shopian district. The doctors are attributing the cause to unsterilized equipments used by dentists.
Jammu and Kashmir Dental Council had taken strong notice of the illegal dental clinics running in the state and vowed to take action against violators.
“Those registered dentists who have not so far applied for registration of their clinical establishments should immediately get their clinics registered with the council,” said president State Dental Council, Dr Romesh Singh.
He asked those registered dentists who have not renewed their clinical registrations should also get their clinical registrations renewed.
Singh warned those unregistered and unqualified persons who are illegally operating dental clinics to close down the establishments, failing which strict action will be initiated without any further notice.
“We request the public to intimate if any unregistered/unqualified person is operating dental clinics in their vicinity to enable us to initiate legal action,” he said.
Singh also said they have constituted teams of inspectors to take strict action against the quacks. “We are going to inspect the clinics very soon. We will take strict action against these fake dentists in the state.”
Meanwhile, the Society of Dental Surgeons, J&K (SDSJK) has hailed the State Dental Council for warning the dentists running without registrations.
“Fake dentists are cause of life-threatening diseases and presently almost all districts, people suffer due to the absence of regulation of such clinics,” said President SDSJK, Dr Imtyaz Banday.
He said that the epidemic of life-threatening blood-borne disease is so worrisome that if this disastrous practice is not abolished it will "create more problems in near future."