Outrage over dental nurses’ ‘anti-patient’ Facebook group

A group of dental nurses on the social network website Facebook, calling themselves ‘I’m a dental nurse and I hate patients because…’, has angered the General Dental Council (GDC).

Under the heading ‘Group Info’, the group claims it’s ‘Just for fun – Inside Jokes’ and, describing themselves, write: ‘This is a group for dental nurses who are sick of patients and their bad attitudes, their stupid comments, their bad personal hygiene and the way they assume it’s OK to burp in your face.’

It has so far netted 497 members.

The GDC has pointed out that posts on the Facebook group, describing patients in derogatory terms, is in breach of GDC’s Standards for Dental Professionals.

The British Association of Dental Nurses (BADN) recommends that any UK dental nurse who is a member of the group leaves it immediately and deletes any posts they may have made, before the GDC takes action.

Pam Swain, writing on Facebook, says: ‘As Chief Executive of the British Association of Dental Nurses, I must advise all UK registered dental nurses (and those hoping to register later in order to be able to work as a dental nurse in the UK), of the General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals – specifically, ‘treat patients with respect and dignity’ and ‘maintain patient confidentiality’.

‘The GDC is aware of this Facebook Group and is considering disciplinary action against any UK registered dental nurse who has breached these standards by posting inappropriate comments on this wall.

‘I would therefore advise any UK registered dental nurses to remove themselves from membership of this Group and to delete any inappropriate postings made in their name as soon as possible.’

Replying in a post, one dental nurse from London explained that the group wasn’t ‘singling out any patients’ and that ‘no confidential info is being shared’.

She added: ‘I’m sure all the dental nurses in this group do treat there patients with respect and just feel that they can share their frustration. Don’t take this group seriously.’

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