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Letters: Rules for a reason

May 16, 2016 I was taken aback at the My View, "The Most Dangerous Place on Earth: My Dental Office," by Dr. Susan Becker Doroshow in the March 21 ADA News. As much as none of us like rules, the vast majority of rules are well thought out and serve a serious purpose. That purpose is to keep people safe, including ourselves. It is a small price to pay to work in the profession we are privileged to work in.

As dentists we have one of the highest salaries of any profession. We also have a high level of respect. That respect comes with the fact that our organization and government impose rules to keep people safe and staff safe and to ensure that dentists are practicing the highest quality of care, with the highest quality of medical supplies.

Yes, we all fret that someone will swoop in and fine us. Well, if you practice properly that is not likely. I also find that government agencies are reasonable in their dishing out of fines. This also protects the good dentist from the bad dentist that can give the entire profession a bad reputation.

As for solo practice again, I believe Dr. Doroshow is off track. The biggest drawback to solo practice is the high level of debt that dental students are leaving school with, and the fact that to set up a practice, which in dentistry is laden with high-tech equipment, is a large investment on top of debt. This has spawned these corporate clinics, which have met a need for general dentists coming out with significant debt.

Also, restrictive boards still play a role in private practice. The requirement of Occupational Safety and Health Administration or any other agency is not the cause of a decrease in solo practices.

Jon Pike, D.D.S.  
Hagerstown, Maryland