Lee SlatonBy Lee Slaton, Vice President of Healthcare; Smart Training

30 Texas Practices Among those Affected

The class action suit that resulted from a data breach affecting over 1,700,000 patients appears to be close to being settled.

Dental Care Alliance is a Sarasota, Florida-based Dental Service Organization (DSO) with more than 320 affiliated practices across 20 states, including at least 30 in Texas. The breach was detected on October 11, 2020, and was contained on October 13, 2020.

The DSO has proposed a settlement to resolve claims related to the data breach but hasn’t admitted any wrongdoing. Among the items provided by the proposed settlement are identity theft protection services, dark web monitoring, and a $1 million identity theft insurance policy. Although affected patients can submit claims for up to $3,000 each, the cap for claims is $3,000,000. If the total amount of claims exceeds that amount, claims will be paid pro rata. The final approval hearing is set for Sept. 1, 2022, and claims must be submitted no later than Aug. 25, 2022.

These stories of woe I treat you practice owners to on a regular basis have a purpose. Smart Training compliance advisors have completed over 2,000 inspections of dental practices all over the country. Time and again, they hear something along the lines of, “Ah, that’ll never happen to me. My practice is (too small, too large, in a small town, in a big city—choose your option) for that to affect me.” For many practice owners, the compliance risk is abstract; but bad things don’t just happen to the other person, sometimes they happen to you. By pointing out examples of when they DO happen, I’m hoping increased awareness levels compels practice owners to up their games. Let’s stay safe out there!

With a little help from an expert, it’s not a heavy lift to make your practice a compliant and safer place for your employees and patients. Compliance advisors at TDA Perks Program-endorsed Smart Training have conducted over 2,000 inspections of dental practices all over the country.