VA offers screening to vets due to questionable dental care at Tomah

Tomah VA Medical Center

TOMAH, Wis. (AP) — The health of hundreds of veterans is in question because a dentist at the Tomah Veterans Affairs Medical Center failed to meet proper cleaning standards.

Tomah VA acting medical director Victoria Brahm said Tuesday 592 veterans that received care from the dentist can receive free screenings for Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV. At a news conference, Brahm said a dental assistant reported last month that the dentist had not properly cleaned equipment, so an investigation was launched.

Brahm says the dental equipment may have been cleaned, but it didn’t meet VA standards.

Fifty-four veterans that had bridge and crown work done received phone calls about the problem. The others affected will receive letters.

“We hope there are no potential infections in this, but would encourage any veterans to come in, have the free testing to allay any fears they might have,” Brahm said.

She added that the risk of infection is low.

The dentist was with the Tomah VA for the past year but was immediately removed from patient care. He could face criminal charges.