Monday, June 22, 2009

Smile Starter and the EEOC

I've not been able to confirm this but I did receive an email reporting that Smile Starters in North Carolina, the same company fined $10 million dollars for medicaid fraud in 2008 are back under federal investigation once again. Only this time it's for discrimination.

Smiles Starters was originally owned and operated by Michael A. DeRose and Letitia Ballance, but soon after investigation for fraud, over treatment of children (doing root canals and crowns on perfectly good teeth, sometime up to 16 at one visit) they supposedly sold the clinics to Dr. Raf Rivera, but that sale remains in question since Dr. Raf was an employee of DeRose and Ballance. Many think DeRose still has his hands in that business.

Both Dr. DeRose and Dr. Ballance were sanctioned by the North Carolina dental board. Dr. Ballance went on to open more medicaid dental clinics, one in Waynesville, NC going under the name of Carolina West Dental.

Why she (Dr. Ballance)is still allowed to bilk medicaid and earn a living using the medicaid system in North Carolina is a question the baffles those who know about it. In fact it is baffling why either of these dentist still have a licenses to practice dentistry in ANY state, and certainly baffling as to why they are not in jail.

Wheather FORBA (of Small Smiles) fame is still associated with these clinics is also in question. At times over the past couple of years, Dr. DeRose has made mention he still owned them, and other times he's stated he sold them with Small Smiles to FORBA. But if asked FORBA will tell you they don't 'own' any dental clinics, they only manage them.

Here is the email I received"

Yes, Smile Starters is back under the eye of the Federal Government. Now they are under investigation for employee discrimination. Look into the EEOC, there are three counts of discrimination against them. They are now firing their most experienced staff and replacing them with unexperienced staff for half the salary. I assume they are trying to make up for the $10 million they had to dish out for Medicaid fraud.

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