This site is intended for health professionals only

At the heart of general practice since 1960

Read the latest issue online

CAMHS won't see you now

Report this comment to a moderator

Please fill in the form below if you think a comment is unsuitable. Your comments will be sent to our moderator for review.

Report comment to moderator

Required fields.


Can I refuse to treat a dental abscess?


My one and only official complaint was about a woman who phoned and asked me to give her "stronger antibiotics" for her abcess that had formed after a dental extraction. It was a bank holiday and she didnt want to travel to the hospital to see the duty dentist. She said I should see her first to see if there was anything I could do instead because it was more convenient for her. My defence union tried to water down my reply letter but I wasn't happy to do that. I felt strongly that this was a dental problem and well beyond my competence to assess. The complaint was thrown out. This does seem to be a problem with defence unions though - they will always try and accept some guilt/responsibility and appease the complainant (as per the advice given by Dr Davies above)

Posted date

26 Jan 2017

Posted time