Infection Prevention and Control Lapse at Burlington dental clinic

Infection Prevention and Control Lapse at Burlington dental clinic

Release Date: Jun 20, 2017

An infection prevention and control inspection conducted by the Halton Region Health Department on June 9, 2017, identified that clients who have received dental services at Upper Middle Dental operated by Dr. Vick Handa, located at 1900 Walkers Line in Burlington, Unit 4, may have been exposed to improperly cleaned instruments used for procedures.

“Improperly cleaned dental instruments carry a low risk of transmitting infectious diseases, such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) to clients,” said Dr. Daniela Kempkens, Acting Medical Officer of Health for Halton Region. “As a precaution, the Halton Region Health Department recommends that all clients who have ever received dental services at Upper Middle Dental contact their physician (or go to a walk-in clinic if they do not have a physician) to discuss testing for hepatitis B, hepatitis C and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).”

On June 9, 2017, upon completion of the inspection, the Halton Region Health Department closed Upper Middle Dental. In addition, the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario (RCDSO) suspended Dr. Handa’s license to practice on June 12. A re-inspection by Health Department staff on June 14 confirmed that the dental office now meets the required infection prevention and control standards. On June 16, the suspension was lifted by the RCDSO. The Halton Region Health Department has sent letters to past and current clients of the dental office to notify them and recommend they contact their physician.

“Infection prevention and control in dentistry is a critical issue for safe patient care,” said a spokesperson for the RCDSO. “As a result, cases like this are extremely rare. Dentists are extensively trained on infection prevention and our mandatory continuous education program makes the subject a priority. The RCDSO is currently reviewing its Guidelines on Infection Prevention and Control in the Dental Office.”

For more information about hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV, the inspection or investigation, please visit halton.ca or call the Halton Region Health Department at 311, 905-825-6000 or toll free 1-866-442-5866. For inquiries related specifically to Upper Middle Dental, please contact the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario by visiting rcdso.org.

The Regional Municipality of Halton serves more than 500,000 residents in the City of Burlington, the Town of Halton Hills, the Town of Milton, and the Town of Oakville. Halton Region is committed to meeting the needs of its residents through the delivery of cost-effective, quality programs and services, including water and wastewater; Regional roads and planning; paramedic services; waste management; public health; social assistance; children’s and seniors’ services; housing services; heritage programs; emergency management and economic development. For more information, dial 311 or visit Halton Region’s website at halton.ca

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Media Contact:
John Winkels
Communications Advisor
Halton Region
905-825-6000, ext. 7490
1-866-442-5866
john.winkels@halton.ca