Iowa dentist, dental assistant sparring after sloppy infection control reported

The Iowa dental community is back in the news, and it once again involves a "he said, she said" between a dentist and a dental assistant.

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The Iowa dental community is back in the news, and it once again involves a "he said, she said" between a dentist and a dental assistant.

While it isn't another case of an irresistible dental assistant being fired, this disagreement revolves around infection control procedures and if they were followed properly ... or ignored.

Dr. Jay Buckley, a dentist in Urbandale, Iowa, has been accused by his former dental assistant, Pamela Gibson, of violating sanitation rules. Gibson told Iowa state regulators that Dr. Buckley would not change his gloves between patients. Instead, he would wash the gloves with soap and water before moving on to the next patient.

According to an article in the Des Moines Register, "Gibson, recorded conversations she had with her boss, state records say. In one of the recordings, she can be heard telling him, 'I want gloves changed between patients,' the documents say. He allegedly could be heard responding: 'I can change them if it bothers you, but if I change my gloves, you will have to move faster between patients.'

Dr. Buckley has countered these claims by saying Gibson is a disgruntled employee who was fired.

On top of this, Gibson also is suing Buckley in Polk County District Court. According to the Register article, "The lawsuit says she worked for him about 16 years. It says he correctly suspected she had reported him to the dental board last year, after which he cut her hours and hourly pay, then fired her. In his reply to her lawsuit, Buckley’s lawyer said Gibson was fired for insubordination and misconduct, including that she came to work in flip-flops, a worn T-shirt and 'pants that drug along the floor as she walked.' Gibson denied the allegation, saying she wore her regular medical scrubs to work."

Yes, things are heating up in Iowa, and we're not just talking about the weather.

To read the entire article from the Des Moines Register, please click here.

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