Monday, December 29, 2008

Aggressive or Overtreatment

In an interview a Small Smiles lead dentist, Aldred Williams said:

"We aggressively treat these children to eliminate disease in their mouth. Small Smiles makes no apologies for that. I'm not going apologize for being aggressive," Williams said.

The word 'aggressive' really bothers me. What's worse is to think thats the 'training' the dentists get (could call in brainwashing I suppose).

I guess a person could insert "overtreat" in place of "aggressive" couldn't they an it still have the exact same meaning.

Of course I don't think Dr. Williams is there any longer after saying that publicly to the mainstream media.

I got this particular quote from the Good Morning America story on Small Smiles, but it was said in the interview with Roberta Baskin at WJLA aas well, I believe.

Here are other quotes from the Good Morning America and WJLA TV story:

1. Former Small Smiles dental assistant, Deborah McDaniel, said she was fired for objecting to the way children were being handled.

2."They wanted us to tell parents that they needed services on teeth that were healthy," McDaniel said. "They were healthy and they didn't need it."

3. "It's a competition throughout the country to see who can convert the most patients, not give the patients the most care," said Trina Crosby, another former Small Smiles employee.

4. The pressure to convert patients may come from FORBA. In fact, every morning Dr. Williams and his staff review the production goals set by the managers in Colorado.

7."They're sweating. Sometimes they urinate on themselves. They'll throw up," Crosby said.

5."It does no good for anybody but the dentist, I guess, who's looking for a bonus," said Robert Camps, a nationally recognized authority on pediatric dentistry whose Maryland practice serves mostly patients on Medicaid.

6.When Camps saw video of Miguel's dental visit, he was disturbed deeply. "It's traumatic for me to watch. I can only imagine how traumatic it is for Miguel," he said.

7.FORBA, the company that owns Small Smiles, said its dentists and staff are sent to its Colorado offices for training. (but I hear only the "lead" dentists are sent for training)

There were 158 comments on this story, you can read all of them here.

Here are just three:

1. I think ABC news should do an undercover investigation on the Small Smiles chain. I mean in every clinic. In one month's time, you would uncover mistreatment of children, insurance fraud, ADA violations, etc. As someone mentioned before - when a new doc joins a clinic and are yet to be accredited with an insurance company - other docs sign off on the chart and the insurance is billed under the signing dentists name. BTY - although it was never publicized, the chain is now within the 'portfolio' of a middle eastern bank. In other words, FORBA and Small Smiles is actually owned by a Bahrainian business group. There is so much more I could say - I can only pray that this story does not wither away. I would love to see the Federal Government step in and conduct an indepth chart by chart audit at every Small Smiles site.

2. I will join the ranks of the 'former employees'. I my year and a half at Small Smiles, I saw and heard so much abuse to children, that I actually developed an ulcer. I fought on a daily basis about the manner in which the docs, assistants, and hygienists were allowed to speak to the children. I witnessed the lead doc getting about 6 inches from the face of a crying, terrified, restrained child and yell at the top of his lungs, "That's enough. Stop being a punk." We were often directed to separate siblings. Especially older siblings that would overhear any yelling at their younger sibs. Competitions on converting....any employees remember "The Road to the Superbowl"? We were also trained to forbid parents in the back clinical area. If the parent balked (especially when there was a several thousand dollar treatment plan), the lead doc, in all his arrogance, would have me escort the parent to a consultation room, and proceed to tell the parent that dental work is just as serious and important as heart surgery and that they wouldn't be allowed in the operating room. WTF ever! The insurance fraud is OUT OF THIS WORLD!!! I was instructed to bill for prophys (cleanings) when all that was done was about a 2 minute tooth brushing with some toothpaste. No prophy angle, no scaling, nada. But I was told to bil a full prophy. I questioned that so much, I was actually told that if I asked and further questions and/or 'stirred the pot' any further, my job would be in jeopardy. I do have to add, that the original FORBA was much more caring than the 'business men' that bought FORBA at the end of 2006. The 'new' management was PURELY about the money. The 'old' FORBA cared about its employees and patients. The new FORBA - in an email that was accidentally forwarded to me had these requirements for a dentist - 'if she isn't cross-eyed and has all 10 fingers, let's make her an offer' sadly, I regret not forwarding that email to the dentist in question.

3. I am an employee at a pediatric dental office and very, very familiar with Small Smiles and their practices. Before you judge them you have to look at all angles of the situation. I live in Colorado, and here, there are so many loop holes and in dentistry and things that are not regulated in dentistry that that in itself should be a crime and the state of Colorado should be looking at that and not just be pointing the finger at Small Smalls. Each clinic is so different that you can not judge all of them as a whole. They are a corporation but they are run individually and some by a bunch of morons who don't know dentistry from gardening. Others of the clinics are run by a fabulous staff who really know their patient care, legalities, and methods. The sad part is knowing who is who. I stand up for Small Smiles because I have so many friends in the dental community who work at great clinics and others who work at ones who honestly do not know how to treat their staff or their patients. Like I said above, you can not only point your finger at the clinics. You have to look at the laws and you have to look at the parents who bring their children in. Until I became a CDA - EFDA I did not even know that baby crowns and root canals existed for two year olds, and I did not think that a 14 year old mom with three other kids was going to be handing me this child to do the work on... so you tell me when this 2 year old is screaming and crying after riding on the bus an hour from home with his mom and other 3 brothers and sisters in the cold of you are going to have mom come back to the room with all the other kids???? or tell me that you tell me that you are going to have a meth addicted parent come back and try to calm their child when THE PARENT keeps saying shut up and sit in the chair. Please do not get me wrong either, I am not saying that anyone is a bad person if they are on Medicaid at all, never would i say that.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Virginia Releases December 2008 Smiles For Children Report

Virginia's Smiles For Children December report is out. It appears the enrollment of dentists is up 80%.

In the report it talks about the use or over use of papoose boards;

"The practice of behavior management techniques during necessary dental treatment of children has also been a continual focus of the Smiles For Children program. Inquiries have been received by the media and parents of dental patients regarding behavior management techniques, specifically, protective stabilization through the use of papoose boards. Papoose boards are devices commonly used to immobilize children for dental work. If performed improperly, trauma to a child may result.

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, protective stabilization is an approved method of behavior management, and pediatric dentists receive behavior management training during post graduate education. These techniques are allowed under the scope of practice,
as defined by the Virginia Board of Dentistry, for licensed dentists in Virginia."

Here is the sticky part of this, hardly any dentist who work in these dental mills like Kool Smiles, Small Smiles and others are NOT pediatric dentists most are general dentists. I notice Dr. David M. Strange, DDS MS is still listed as one of the Advisory Committee, you may remember him from Kool Smiles.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Kool Smiles Pays U.S. Over $1Million

Dental Clinic Business Settles $1 Million Claim

December 19. 2008

NBC WYFF TV, Channel 4

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- An Atlanta-based dental healthcare provider with clinics in Sumter, Anderson, and Greenville has agreed to pay the United States more than $1 million to settle a claim.

Kool Smiles PC, Inc. was accused of billing Medicaid for the work of an unauthorized dentist in the Sumter area.

The dental health care provider agreed to pay a total of $1,360,528 to resolve allegations that it submitted claims to Medicaid for services provided by the dentist who had previously been excluded from all federal health care benefit programs, including Medicaid.

The dentist in question was disqualified for Medicare funding because she had failed to repay more than $22,000 in federal student loans, according to U. S. Attorney Walter Wilkins.

Under the agreement, Kool Smiles will repay all the money it received from Medicaid for the services provided by the dentist after she was excluded, plus interest and investigative costs.

Under the settlement agreement, Kool Smiles will repay all the money it received from Medicaid for the services provided by the dentist, plus interest and investigative costs.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Parents Comment on WAVY TV Report

Click here to read even more of the comments from parents after WAVY TV reporter Derrick Rose reported on Kool Smiles in Virginia

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Louisville Small Smiles Clinic Owner Not Mentioned in Press Release

Over at FORBA's weblog they have an entry where they had an open house for the Small Smiles Clinic in Louisville, Kentucky.

Melanie Abrams was mentioned as Co-Lead Dentist ('lead dentist': a term used a lot at Small Smiles) but through the whole article the owner of the clinic wasn't mentioned, just Forba and lead dentists.

You would think if a dentist opened a new dental clinic his name would be mentioned.

According to Kentucky Revised Statues (KRS) 313.240 states:

(1)(a)"No person shall practice or offer to practice dentistry or dental surgery under the name of any company, association or corporation except the name of a professional service corporation. Any person practicing or offering to practice dentistry or dental surgery shall practice under his or her own name; the name of the professional service corporation, professional limited liability company or partnership which includes his or her name, or the name of the deceased or incapacitated dentist for whom the person practicing dentistry has contracted to perform continuing operations."

(b) No such person shall conduct a dental office in his or her name nor advertise his or her name in connection with any dental office unless he or she personally performs services as a dentist or dental surgeon in such office or personally supervises such services as are performed in such office during a portion of the time such office is operated by him or her, and shall not use his or her name in connection with that of any other dentist, except as provided for deceased or incapacitated dentists in KRS 313.197

(c) No person shall be an incorporator, director, officer, member, manager or shareholder in more than three (3) professional service corporations, three (3) professional limited liability companies, or three (3) partnerships, or any three (3) of these business entities, rendering dental or dental surgery services. No dentist or dental surgeon or group of dentists or dental surgeons shall practice in more than three (3) locations.

So Jodi Kuhn couldn't possibly be the owner of this clinic, it's said she owns 4 or so in Ohio. Who could be the owner of this Louisville clinic?

Friday, November 28, 2008

Fighting For The Children Gets Blogger Sued by FORBA-Small Smiles

Well it's finally happened, to some I'm sure they are so enjoying it but to others not so much.

FORBA is suing this blogger for defamation among other things like posting that very revealing list of all their clinics and the numerous name they go under.

I'm not sure exactly what they want. I signed a Consent Injunction agreeing to remove the documents they let get put out on the world wide web. I guess they really weren't realizing what the www stood for when posting stuff on the Internet for all to see. They are claiming the documents were trade secrets or copyrighted.

However I don't understand how they can claim something is a 'Trade Secret' when it appears they released them to the Internet to be indexed and cached by Google.

I have until December 4, 2008 to file my ''Answer" to their Complaint. However I guess they are wanting to bombard me with legal papers since today I received a package, well actually 2, they sent one certified and the other just regular mail, seems like a waste to me, but whatever.

In this packet were their first set of Interrogatories. Questions they want me to answer under oath, it's part of the 'Discovery' stage in a lawsuit. I wish they would at least let me file my answer for heavens sake.

They've not cared what has been said or posted on this blog since it's beginning in January 2008, but the moment I posted a spreadsheet that could be incriminating depending on how you see it, I was slapped with a lawsuit. Guess I really hit a nerve and there were things on the document they sure didn't want anyone to see. They could have easily sent a Cease and Desist letter or request a retraction at any time but they never bothered.

Honestly I'm not sure why they worry about my little ole blog anyway. They are my biggest visitors. In fact if they didn't visit so often my blog probably would rate as high as it does in the search engines.

This is all been filed in Federal Court since it involves 'trade secrets' and we are in two different states.

Funny thing is, I think FORBA is involved in a lawsuit in Texas over copyright infringement themselves between a dental clinic called Texas Smiles Dental and them setting up shop down there under the name Texas Smiles. Kettle-Black, right.

I now clearly understand what employees mean when they post that they are bullies and you better shape up or ship out or they will come down hard on you. (paraphrasing here) They certainly play hardball.

I'm wondering why they decided it was me they went after. After all they have been on news stations and had several thorough investigations done on them by the main stream media, heck they were even on Good Morning America. My guess is that I'm the easiest target and they are mad and need to take it out on somebody.

But as bad a reputation as they have, being in the news numerous times, have horrific reviews on hundreds of message boards all over the Internet, seem to me they are kind of libel proof. If a person is bad and has been bad for a long time, and it's been common knowledge kind of hard to get upset and cry foul just because someone else joined in on that opinion for example.

I also understand how the parents of the patients who have suffered at the hands of FORBA's Small Smiles dentists and not having the funds or resources to bring suit and fight for your rights in court.

Anyway like I was saying, today I got my Interrogatories and boy some of the questions on there are ambiguous and down right silly to say the least.

I'll give you some examples:

1. Name internet domain names (by URL) and email address that you have created controlled, owned, used, and or operated in the past or present.

2. Identify (by make and model) all computers from which you have updated the website and all computers you have sent or received email over the past 5 years!

3. State all facts, and identify all documents and 'things' evidencing such facts, of which you are aware that support your representation that:

a. FORBA practices abusive dental care

b. dental clinics managed by FORBA have quotas to meet with respect to the number of patients served per day.

c. FORBA does unnecessary dental work, abuses children for profit and fraudulently bills medicaid.

4. Produce all records (whether in digital, paper or any other form) of all entries posted to the website, whether or not those entries still appear as of today's date.

(I guess they want me to pull stuff out of thin air, or create things that are just not there, gone and forgotten about)

5. Produce your home computer and any and all other computers you have used in the last 5 years for email correspondence for inspection and for the purposes of making a forensic image of the hard drives of such computers.

(I sure would like to have a little 'look see' in all their computers too, oh and all their correspondence and emails, and documents and files etc.)

The local Cyber Cafe is going to be a bit upset when I try to take one of their computers, telling them I had to cause FORBA wants it.

6. Produce all documents and 'things' that reference or reflect any posting by you to any Internet website other than my blog where such posting discusses or relates to FORBA.

Like I said, these are just a few of their requests. I have the right to object to each and every one of them.

I'm taking it FORBA / Small Smiles wants to stay in the news for as long as possible.

Anyway if you want to see the complaint, send me an email and I'll get you a copy.

What we have here is a very slippery slope where our First Amendment Rights are being attacked. I for one can tell you FORBA sure doesn't want to be critiqued, doesn't want you to have a negative opinion of them, or try to get laws changed so that clinics like them can't operate in states. Which is an infringement on my (our) right to petition.

They are giving me much more credit that I deserve if little ole me can do more damage to their reputation that main stream media and highly regarded investigative reporters. I should be flattered.

Anyway this has just given me something else to fight with FORBA about.

Friday, November 21, 2008

More Parents Respond To Kool Smiles Report By WAVY TV Reporter Derrick Rose

Click here to read all the stories from parents. They just go on and on, story after story and who is stopping this? Nobody so far!

Monday, November 17, 2008

WAVY TV Reports on Complaints about Kool Smiles

WAVY TV's , an NBC affiliate serving Norfolk, Portsmouth and Newport News Virginia, Derrick Rose reports on the usual complaints about the treatment of children at chain dental clinics catering to underserved children on medicaid that are operating in various states across the US.

Kool Smiles was created by Dr. Tu Tran and Dr. Thien Pham who trained with then broke from Drs. Michael DeRose and Dr. Ed DeRose who were the creators of Small Smiles/FOBRA that has hit the news in many areas including Good Morning America.

Click Here To Read Derricks Report

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Forba/Small Smiles Entering Orthodontics Market

Looks like just doing unnecessary dental work. abusing children for profit and fraudulently billing medicaid isn't enough for Small Smiles. They are now looking to venture into orthodontics.

See job listing for an orthodontist in MA.

If their orthodontic work is anything like their general dentistry work the children's teeth will go from perfectly aligned to completely screwed up.

If you are an Orthodontist applying for a job at Small Smiles I suggest you do your homework before even thinking about considering a job with this horrible company.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Small Smiles New Signage For It's Albany, NY Clinic

007 This is the new face of Forba's (Small Smiles) Clinic in Albany, NY.
It's now called Access Dentistry Albany on the window, however when Dr. Izadi was looking for new employees online his email was

005 As you can clearly see Dr. Izadi is still there just as he was when the place was called Small Smiles.

Look, it's clear that as Small Smiles hit the air waves there under a cloud of allegations of Dr. Izadi abusing children and defrauding Medicaid Forba simply changed the name of the clinic, had Dr. Izadi apply to receive Medicaid payments directly instead of through Forba and it was business as usual. They didn't skip a beat. Within 10 days of being shut out of the NY Medicaid program in May of 2008 they were back in business. I'm not sure they ever locked the door on the place during those few days.

It's reported that payments from Medicaid are deposited into a bank in Wisconsin and guess where Forba/Small Smiles banks, yep Associated Bank located in Wisconsin.

Don't be fooled folks, this is still the same Small Smiles office that was reported on by Steve Flamisch, they have just changed the signage. Be sure to see his reports on this site.
Do Not take your children there for dental care!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Dad tackles Smile Starters Dentist

It doesn't look like things have changed any under the so called new management at Smile Starters in North Carolina.  (BTW, it's still under Michael DeRose control)

Here is a comment I got just two days ago.

My friend took her son there for his first dental visit and has vowed never to return. She managed to witness the staff attempting to restrain her infant son into a straight jacket, which they said was needed to keep him from moving and potentially injuring himself. Then she checked a little later and the doctor had a fist inches away from her sons face at which point her husband tackled the doctor and she grabbed her son. They are suing.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Current Review Shows Nothing Has Changed At Small Smiles

Recent Review of Dr. Erin Haggard at Small Smiles in Oklahoma City:

This was posted 8-20-08, just a few days ago. After reading it you can see NOTHING is changing at Small Smiles.

My friend just took her 3 year old son to this place and had a nightmare experience. They tied him up and didn't notify her, she only found out because he wet his pants and when she asked him what happened he said they didn't let him go because he was tied up. When she went back in to ask them about it they said that it was something common for them. The treatment they gave him was silver caps, which she found out later were absolutely not necessary. The reason she found this out was because he had a big cut on his lip (which they claimed was from him bitting himself) and the cut got a really bad infection, which SS wouldn't treat so she had to go to another dentist and that's when she was told the caps were not even needed.
Needless to say, this place is HORRIBLE!
Just ask yourself: why won't they let you go to the back with your child?!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

"Drilling For Dollars" Wins Emmy

image On Monday evening, September 22, 2008, Roberta Baskin, was awarded a national Emmy for her multi-part exposé on Small Smiles, a chain of pediatric dentist centers that preyed and profitted on children and the Medicaid system. Roberta previously won the Scripps-Howard Award for National Journalism for her series.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Comment From Nancy Mastreno

Below is a comment I received the other day. I will say these kind are few and far between but they show the ignorance of some people. I wonder if Nancy ever stopped to wonder just where a dentist got the kind of money the DeRose's portray they have. Giving millions here, hundreds of thousands there, establishing million dollar endowments at Universities etc. For heavens sake Michael and Eddie were just dentists! Nancy needs to get a clue. I bet there are a few of my readers who would love to enlighten Ms. Mastreno.

Who are you and what kind of a grudge do you have. You really need to get a life. I have known the DeRose family almost my entire life and have witnessed their generosity. Yes, they and many others contributed to building this stadium and bringing football back to CSU Pueblo. It is great for the community and the school. My first dental assisting job was with Dr. Eddie when I was still in high school many many years ago. I am still in dentistry, but in another dental office with no connection to the DeRoses, and I have nothing but respect for this family. They have given back to this community many times over and most people don't even know how generous they are because they don't give with the condition of posting what they do. You must need to get a life and stop being so obsessed with this family. Nancy Mastreno

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Albany Access Dentistry - Former Small Smiles Still Getting Medicaid Dollars

Dentists Getting State Money, Despite State Investigations

August 14, 2008 - 7:43PM
They're under state investigation, but they're still collecting state money.
Small Smiles Dentistry, which removed all traces of its name in late May, is now known simply as a "dentist's office." New York terminated the Colonie children's dental clinic from its Medicaid program on May 24, but the two remaining dentists subsequently applied for and received their own Medicaid provider numbers, a source in state government said.

That means they are legally working on children and collecting state reimbursements, even as three state agencies investigate their alleged misconduct.

Those allegations, made by three ex-employees and 107 parents, mirror claims made against Small Smiles locations in several other cities nationwide: that dentists performed rushed and unnecessary procedures in pursuit of lucrative bonuses and Medicaid money. Your taxpayer money.

In a recent survey of 29 Small Smiles parents:

  • 17 / 29 said they requested -- but were denied -- the ability to sit with their child(ren) during treatment
  • 12 / 29 said their child(ren) was/were placed under a papoose board, unable to move his/their arms and legs

  • 3 / 29 said they did not consent to the use of that papoose board in advance
  • 18 / 29 said the dentist placed crowns on their child(ren)'s baby teeth (as many as eight crowns in one sitting)
  • 12 / 29 said their child(ren) developed complications, including bleeding, infection, and severe pain
  • 6 / 29 said another dentist later told them the work done at Small Smiles was not necessary
In sometimes scathing statements, a few parents said their children were screaming in pain because the dentist did not wait for the Novocain to take effect, or skipped it altogether. Other parents described staff members placing dirty instruments back in the drawer, or in their child's mouth.

With the parents' written permission, CBS 6 mailed copies all of the questionnaires and statements to state investigators from three departments. One agency -- the State Education Department's Office of Professional Discipline -- had filed a subpoena, requesting related documents. That agency licenses the dentists.

Small Smiles corporate spokesman Don Meyer, who has called CBS 6's reporting of the allegations "a striking case of substandard journalism" full of "baseless claims," offered a generic response to the parents:

"We handle parent concerns on a case-by-case basis. Parents are encouraged to contact their child's dental center directly (464-0402) or call our 800 number. As previously stated, we take any concern seriously, and take immediate action to remedy problems if and when they occur."

Meyer promised an explanation for the name change at the Colonie clinic, but he had not offered one by Thursday night.

Stay with CBS 6 News for the latest on the state investigations.

EDITORIAL NOTE: Dr. Maziar Izadi, who retreated from a CBS 6 camera crew when approached for comment in March, is still practicing at the former Small Smiles clinic. CBS 6 is withholding the name of the other dentist because he, unlike Izadi, was not named by any parents.

Most parents said they didn't know who worked on their child(ren), because they never met the dentist. Only a dental assistant came to the waiting room to speak to them.

Wild Smiles Comment

Here is a comment posted about the new Wild Smiles and I just didn't want anyone to miss it so I'm posting it here on the main page.
Wild Smiles? That is a good one! What makes these people think that the word 'smiles' is appropriate in any of their names?
How about DF&B? Drill Fill and Bill instead?
Maybe 'Screams are Us'?
How about 'Dental Mills of America'?
What a racket these places have- they have twenty one years to drill teeth on one child. About ten or twelve of those years they can drill, fill, drill again. Then remove the nerve in tetth and put metal caps on them. Not only that they have a bunch of 'permanent' teeth that come in and they can drill on them from about age five or six to age twenty one! That is about fifty something teeth per person that they can have their way with over a period of twenty one years. Forget about preventative measures to prevent decay! They would lose out on something way too good and profitable for them!
Too many teeth are drilled unnecessarily. Too many teeth are root canal treated and capped and then many times extracted a short while later. Too many times small cavities are missed and they end up being so the tooth needs to be cut away more than it should have been, or something worse, like extraction.. Too many teeth are being cut that do not even have decay. They regularly take x-rays on every patient every six months regardless of if there is a reason or not. They squeeze out every dollar from every patient in every way they can, If they miss out on a billable procedure- they get upset!
The list of shameful practices goes on daily at these places.
The poor and unsuspecting parents and children that go to Small Smiles and others like them are being taken advantage of. They lose teeth at an early age when they do not need to. They receive treatments that are often excessive or not even needed.
Small Smiles is a shameful profiteering scheme under the guise of "health care' and providing "care" for those so-called under served. Those who do not even have a clue of what is occurring.
And Medicaid payers in every state nationwide should be reeled in and held responsible for the shameful waste of taxpayers' money by allowing these places to operate completely unchecked.
There needs to be something done to reverse this trend of profiting excessively through Medicaid fraud and other abuses.
Smiles? There is nothing to smile about. These places do not really care for the people that come there. They truly are interested in making as much money as they can, as fast as they can, and as easily as they can.

Mark DeRose's Great American Tire and Auto Service

Everyday someone sends me or I find something more about the Great American Family of Eddie DeRose. This one was sent to me and is about his son Mark.
I don't know if these guys are still in business or not, nor do I care. But if there is a Great American Tire and Auto Service Center in your area, do the world a favor and boycott the place. This family preys on children for profit!
September 2002
Modern Tire Dealer Article
The idea for Great American Tire and Auto Service Centers started simply enough, with a combination service station/convenience store in Colorado in 1986. But owners Mark DeRose and Chuck Pecoraro were not satisfied.
So in 1998, their "multi-facility concept" was born. Great American Tire partnered with Shell Oil Co. to create a one-stop shop with a tire and automotive service center, a Shell Rapid Lube, a convenience store and gas station.
Four years later, there are 12 Great American Tire complexes in the United States, with another scheduled to open Nov. 13th in McKinney, Texas, a suburb of Dallas.
According to Janet Beaudry, vice president of marketing and sales, the company's goal is to make the experience of buying tires and automotive service an enjoyable one for the customer. To that end, Great American Tire posts its prices, displays its tires in cabinets and makes use of interactive tire and wheel kiosks to better inform car owners. Customers can watch their vehicles being serviced as part of the store design. [This is where I about crapped my pants! They will let you watch your car being worked on but not your child!]
Each outlet also furnishes its showroom with leather sofas, ample table space, copies of O and Food and Wine magazines, a refrigerator with bottled water and Game Boy players for the kids.
Great American Tire, based in Greenwood Village, Colo., plans to add another 38 stores in high-growth neighborhoods by 2005, according to Beaudry. Modern Tire Dealer recently caught up with her, and asked her about the company's expansion plans.
MTD: What are your expansion plans for the near-term?
Beaudry: Within the next three years, we'll have 50 total stores. Right now, we have our real estate team in each of the markets we’re interested in looking for the perfect corner, a high traffic, high commuter area.
MTD: Presently, you have 12 stores, or "multi-facilities" as you like to call them, located in suburbs rather than inner-city areas. Is that always your goal?
Beaudry: You have high growth in suburbs. Also, suburbs are critical because we need a big lot size, and you don't have two-acre lots in mature market areas. With our multi-facility concept, we need room for a Great American Tire and Auto Service Center, a quick lube, gasoline pumps and a convenience store.
MTD: I know Shell runs the quick lube, gas pumps and convenience store. Are they co-owners of each complex?
Beaudry: We own the complex, and we lease out part of the lot back to Shell. We choose each lot, obviously, with support from Shell, so each one has the demographics both Shell and Great American are looking for.
MTD: You sell tires manufactured by Michelin. Are they part-owners of Great American Tire?
Beaudry: We just sell Michelin brands exclusively. That's our relationship with Michelin. We sell Michelin, BFGoodrich, Uniroyal and Cavalier tires.
MTD: Will all your complexes be built from scratch?
Beaudry: As far as I know. Everything that has come across my desk has been (empty) lots.... We want the gas station and the convenience store next to the tire outlet because at that point we become a destination, a place where you can get everything for your car in one stop. We want to have that because that's what makes us more attractive to the consumer.
MTD: Fifty stores from scratch by 2005 seems very ambitious...
Beaudry: Every person in every department is focused on that goal, from the people in land development, purchasing, construction, marketing, sales, accounting, human resources -- everyone.
MTD: Is your business plan to eventually go public or set up a franchising program or both?
Beaudry: As of right now, there is nothing on the radar screen to go public or franchise. Saying that, we want all 50 stores to basically look and feel the exact same, to have the same level of customer service. That's why at this point we feel the need to keep them all in the company's portfolio.
MTD: Do you have any long-term goals in regard to number of stores?
Beaudry: Ultimately, if all goes well, there will be 300 stores. But that would be long-term. The immediate attention for all of us is the 50 stores.
MTD: Where will the stores be located?
Beaudry: The 50 stores will go into nine great markets. We're in Denver, Seattle, Phoenix, Atlanta and Sterling, Va., now. We will expand into the Dallas area Nov. 13. We want to expand into Chicago, northern Boston and southern Florida -- Dayton County in particular. There will be a minimum of five stores in each market (there are seven stores in the Denver area).
MTD: Are you targeting any particular type of customer?
Beaudry: The stores are designed to attract anyone who's in control of their car maintenance. In our stores, 60% of our customers, on average, are female. But our marketing efforts and expansion efforts target anyone who wants a clean, relaxing place to have their car serviced. In our industry, you don't hear people saying that buying tires or getting their vehicles serviced is relaxing. We kind of change the way people think about their service and what their experience should be.
MTD: What do you feel is unique about your complexes?
Beaudry: One of the unique things about Great American is its disclosure of all pricing, which also adds to the comfort level of our customers when they're in our store. Except for tax and environmental fees, it's all incorporated in the pricing, which I think reduces the stress. Everything's simplified. It's not pricing roulette. And our pricing is fair.
It's the same way we sell tires and service. (Our technicians) will pinpoint your needs and show you the needs of your car. We've taken all the complication out of servicing your car.
MTD: What do you mean by "fair" pricing?
Beaudry: We definitely are price-competitive in all markets in terms of the tires and services we sell. We're not the lowest price, or the highest price. We find the comfortable competitive price point within that market.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Tish Ballance's Hands Back In The Till

Well in just a few weeks is the scheduled opening date of Dr. Tish Ballance's newest medicaid dental clinic, Carolina West Dental located in Waynesville, NC. Can you believe after settling a claim with Dr. Michael DeRose of Pueblo, CO in the amount of $10 million dollars the state of North Carolina is going to let her hands back into the Medicaid till?

Is it just me that finds this outrageous? Surely not.


Above is a picture of what your child may well look like if they go to Dr. Ballance's dental clinic.

This is the same woman who thought it was perfectly fine to put strap innocent children down in papoose boards and fill their mouths with 16-18 stainless steel crowns!

Small Smiles Says It's Family Owned


Small Smiles has their company info on (click here) Here they say they are family owned. I sure wish they would make up their minds on who owns them don't you guys? I guess it depends on who is asking, right?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Wild Smiles Just Another Name For Small Smiles

Forba's newest name change Wild Smiles is now open in Houston. Don't be fooled by the name, it is still FORBA, it's still Texas Smiles USA, it is still Small Smiles! I expect all of the clinics may soon see a name change. Picking Wild Smiles is quite appropriate don't you think?
5720-D Bellaire Boulevard — between Hillcroft Avenue and Chimney Rock Road

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Colorado Has Enacted A New Dental Practice Ownership Law

It looks like Colorado has enacted some new laws and regulations regarding dental practice ownership. After reading the new law it appears to be geared toward Forba/Small Smiles. If so this would be the second time Colorado has had to enact laws especially geared toward these clinics. The first one was limiting the number of crowns done in one setting and limiting the amount of time they can keep a child tied up in a papoose board.

Here is the new law:

Colorado Enacts New Laws Regarding Dental Practice Ownership
On March 20, 2008, Governor Bill Ritter, Jr. signed House Bill 08-1134 into law effective August 5, 2008. A portion of this bill concerns the disclosure of the ownership of a practice that provides dental care to patients. This law will directly affect all dental or dental hygiene practices in Colorado. Specifically, this new law requires that certain information regarding the ownership of the dental or hygiene practice be available upon request at the reception desk of the practice during normal business hours. The law further provides that this information be made available on a form approved by the Board. This ownership form is available on the Board’s website here. The availability of this information is a mandatory requirement, effective August 5, 2008.

Another important provision in this legislation is that it allows an heir to the dentist or dental hygienist to serve as a proprietor of the deceased’s practice for up to one year after their death, regardless of whether the heir is licensed to practice. And that upon good cause shown, may petition the Board for an extension of the temporary ownership period by up to an additional twelve months, if necessary, to allow them sufficient time to sell or otherwise dispose of the practice.

I especially enjoyed the form they designed to be filled out and on hand at the front desk for anyone to be able to ask and see exactly who really owns a particular clinic. Of course Forba is notorious for using the licenses of dentist that are actually Forba employees and saying they are the owners. They do this in several states, Ken Knott and Robert Andrus are prime examples of this.

What blows my mind is what amount of money would a dentist have to receive in compensation to loan out their licenses like that. Of course when Forba fills out this little form it will be just more fraudulent evidence won't it.

Does you Colorado Dental Clinic have this form on hand at the front desk? It should, since this law took effect August 8, 2008.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Forba's Banking Habits

Ever wonder where Forba /Small Smiles does it's banking? Well so did I. I was able to obtain a copy of the back of a check Forba Holding, LLC deposited into their account. I removed the actual account number since I figured none of you actually wanted to make a deposit in their account.

They make their deposits to Associated Bank (Assocaited Banc-Corp) that has branches in Wisconsin and Illinois, which by the way are two states they don't have even one clinic in operation. Am I the only one that finds that a bit odd?

There is another thing I find odd that's I've been told by those who either work for or have worked for Forba. They pay out of various accounts. Some get paid from Children's Medicaid Clinic, and others paid from Forba Holding,LLC some paid from Forba NY, LLC and I believe some get their bonus checks coming from yet another company name.

If you get checks from Forba email me and tell me where your checks come from and what bank they are written on.

Clickable Email Me Link

Friday, August 29, 2008

So who owns 415 N. Grand Street, Pueblo, Colorado-Forba's Colorado Address?

Want to know who owns "Touchdown Properties" click here. If you don't want to take the time to click I'll just tell you. It's Dan DeRose. Well, Dan DeRose and Michael A. Roumph. If you search for Michael, he's a huge part of DD Marketing, Dan's other company.

I know that Michael DeRose and his daddy, Eddie take a lot of heat over this Small Smiles/Forba thing, probably since they are dentists themselves, but Danny boy is up to his friggin neck in this whole thing.

Forba Holding, LLC Sues Adventure Dental and Vision (Hero Management, Ron Montano)

I reported a month or so ago about Ron Montano, his dental management company, Hero Management and his string of clinics called Adventure Dental and Vision.  I reported that he used to work for Small Smiles.  His separation from the company is conflicting, I've heard he quit, I've heard he was fired...not that it really matters.

Well, in April 2007 Forba Holding file a lawsuit again Ron Montano and Hero Management and the cause in question is the "Economic Espionage Act of 1996, section 18:1831.  Forba was demanding $350,000 in damages according to the suit.  Cause Number 2007cv00675.  This particular case was dismissed on September 21, 2007 with both parties agreeing not to pursue this any further.  I suspect Forba really didn't want ALL their trade secrets being aired in open court don't you?

According to Wikipedia the Economic Espionage Act of 1996 is as follows:

The Economic Espionage Act of 1996 (see RFD 18 U.S.C. § 1831) makes the theft or misappropriation of a trade secret a federal crime.

This law contains two sections criminalizing two sorts of activity. The first, 18 U.S.C. § 1831(a), criminalizes the misappropriation of trade secrets (including conspiracy to misappropriate trade secrets and the subsequent acquisition of such misappropriated trade secrets) with the knowledge or intent that the theft will benefit a foreign power. Penalties for violation are fines of up to US$500,000 per offense and imprisonment of up to 15 years for individuals, and fines of up to US$10 million for organizations,

The second section, 18 U.S.C. § 1832, criminalizes the misappropriation of trade secrets related to or included in a product that is produced for or placed in interstate (including international) commerce, with the knowledge or intent that the misappropriation will injure the owner of the trade secret. Penalties for violation of section 1832 are imprisonment for up to 10 years for individuals (no fines) and fines of up to US$5 million for organizations.

In addition to these specific penalties, section 1834 of the EEA also requires criminal forfeiture of (1) any proceeds of the crime and property derived from proceeds of the crime and (2) any property used, or intended to be used, in commission of the crime.

The Act authorizes civil proceedings by the Department of Justice to enjoin violations of the Act, but does not create a private cause of action. Thus, victims or putative victims must work with the U.S. Attorney in order to obtain an injunction.

I don't really understand exactly why it was Forba vs Hero since this is a criminal act and Forba would have to file a criminal complaint with the US Attorney to get this suit filed and according to the filings this is a civil suit. 

Anyway, evidently Forba says Ron Montano took some 'trade' secrets with him when he left Small Smiles and is using them to profit from his Adventure Dental and Vision clinics.

The attorney for Forba was William T. Slamkowski of Hensley, Kim and Holzer in Denver.  The attorney for Ron Montano  was Brett Painter of Davis, Graham and & Stubbs in Denver.


Ok, I finally got my hands of the law suit and Forba was ticked off because two of their employees, besides Ron himself went over to Adventure Dental at the time it was called Captain Smiles.  The two others that jumped Forba's ship was Joseph Lee and Adam Ditto.  Lee and Ditto supposed took all this sensitive info over to Montano....

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Tish Ballance, DDS Small Business Loan

Here is a link to a list of Small Business Association loans in North Carolina.  About 3/4 of the way down the page you will see Letitia L. Ballance, DDS, PA was approved for a 1.3 million dollar loan in January, on the 28th to be exact or that's how I read it anyway. 

That was about 4 months before she entered into the $10 million dollar settlement with the government for Medicaid fraud.

Wonder what happened to this money?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Dr. Tish Ballance Still Living High

Tish Ballance 2resized

Who says it's not profitable to accept medicaid dental patients? Here is Dr. Letitia (Tish) Ballance's home just outside Charlotte, North Carolina on Charlie Hipp Road. It's close to 10,000 square feet, sets on 8.5 acres, has a stable and valued at around 1 million dollars. Even though she was ordered to pay her part of a $10 million dollar settlement for Medicaid fraud, over treating children, strapping them in papoose boards to increase patient flow through the office she's still living in high cotton as some would say.

Tish Ballance 3 Here is a picture of it when it was still under construction.

Tish Ballance1resized

One thing I know for sure is that Tish Ballance won't be driving to Waynesville to work in that clinic she's planning on opening in Waynesville, NC. I drove it and from her house to that clinic is real close to 140 miles one way.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Here is an example of the heart felt letters I get from dentists across the nation

Thank you for your courage in dealing w/ this issue. I hope the US Attorney's Office would take note, as this represents interstate organized crime, & RICO violations.

The horrors of this organization are well known to those willing to take their heads out of the sand. It goes from the overdose & death of a child a few years ago in West Phoenix, to "over-billing", to physical restraints, to hand over nose & mouth (stops child's breathing) to insert Molt mouth ratchet, to hair dryers so parents won't see peed pants of frightened kids as they return to reception room, to blasted music sound systems to block out cries of children, to gross over-treatment, etc.

What in particular eats at me is the corruption of my junior dentist colleagues. They are never quite the same after experiencing these "clinics". They are in some state of post-traumatic shock. It's difficult for them to open up, & when they do, they flood w/ emotions.

In many ways, it's not only the children which suffer. The junior dentists & auxiliary staff also are damaged by the experience. Their stories are difficult to hear.

Medicaid & "Access to Care" are political footballs, which few truly wish to honestly face. Poor children are pawns. Too bad.

BTW- Up until a couple of years ago, Dan DeRose managed a company (owners included father, Edward (dentist) & brother Michael (dentist)), which placed soda pop machines in public schools. Big $$$! Seemingly, this is an ethical conflict. Step 1. Generate cavities in kids (especially in low-income communities where they need pop machines to subsidize education.). Step 2. Advertise in public schools via take-home flyers to parents of dental care (Medicaid). Step 3. Have Medicaid dental clinic open for business.

Did you check out the public record of the CO Dental Board & Sanctions against Drs. Edward & Michael DeRose? CO Dental Board prevailed. Dental Board claimed DeRoses utilized unlicensed dentists at their CO Medicaid clinics. The DeRoses countered these were "training" activities.

Again, thank you for assisting the public good.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Tish Ballance To Open Clinic in Waynesville, NC October 2008

After much discussion on what the heck happened to Tish Ballance and her Access West dental clinic that was supposed to open in Asheville, NC in July 2008 I thought it was time to just go find out for myself.
So I took off to Asheville to check things out.  There is no sign of her Access West Clinic in Asheville and the number you find of the Internet is no longer in service, nor is there a current phone number for Access West, so hopefully we stopped that theivin dentist in Asheville.
However and this is a big however!  She is opening up a clinic in Waynesville, NC about 25 miles northwest of Asheville close to Maggie Valley and Cherokee, NC.  It's a beautiful little town nestled at the foot of the mountains.  A good place for a crook to hide out.
Her new clinic's name is Carolina West Dental Clinic and will be located in Waynesville Plaza shopping center in the old Family Dollar building.  It appeared the plumbing is in for all the dental stations but not one stud has been put up in the huge building. 
I asked the construction guys about the place and they directed me across the parking lot to a small tan building housing a construction company's office who builds log home among other things.
I spoke with the gentlemen in the office and they told me the place should be ready to open at the end of October, so we still have some time left to stop this clinic from opening as well. 
Evidently times are hard for Tish as her contractor seems to be also acting as her human resources person.  I say this since I presented my self as looking for a job and the new clinic and he insisted that I could get my resume together and leave it with him and he would see to it that it got to the right person.
But there seems to be no sign of her greed little hands in Asheville unless she used some other name to open her clinic other than Access West or Carolina West Dental.
It's time we warn the good citizens of Waynesville what kind of person is about to start treating the children in this small quaint town.

Small Smiles In New Albany Still Treating and Mistreating Children; Collecting Medicaid Dollars Once Again!

New Albany Small Smiles Clinic Still In Business. The sign simply says Dentist Clinic, but the new name actually is Albany Access Dentistry as I've reported on here before.

Thank goodness more parents are suing Forba/Small Smiles! Their Legal Eagles of King and Spalding should be quite busy right about now.

Of course Forba is going to say they no longer own this clinic but that simply is an out right lie. They know they own it, I know they own it and others know damn well they own it!

If you do a 'who is' for who owns and administers the Albany Access Dentistry website you will see that it's FORBA. Yeah, they registered that name just days following the Albany clinic being shut out of the medicaid program in NY.

Anyone who reads this blog knows that Small Smiles/Forba always seems to find a way to skirt the laws of every state in which they operate. But something tells me this is all coming to a swift end very soon. These reports are not going away, and I certainly am not going away, not as long as Forba insists on abusing children for profit!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Shotty Toothbrushes Sent Home With Patients At Small Smiles, Smile Starters and other Forba Owned Clinics

Little did I know the response I would get when I posted about the toothbrushes imported from China by Brad Padula.  These toothbrushes were supposed to be FDA approved or at least that's what it said.

However, from massive amounts of emails I've received I seriously doubt it, unless the FDA approved toothbrushes loaded with stains on the bristles, crumbing handles that left your mouth full of bristles and pieces parts.  Not that I would expect a quality brush sent home, they want those teeth to rot, right?!

Anyway, if they give you one of those toothbrushes that are not a brand name, take it home and throw the damn thing in the garbage.

Dr. Letitia (Tish) Ballance Update

I'm getting conflicting reports as to whether Letitia (Tish) Ballance opened her new state of the art "Access West" dental clinic is Asheville, but am getting a strong report she's opening a clinic in Waynesville, NC, located in Waynesville Plaza.

However I did do a little search to see if maybe Tish had ever been licensed in Colorado, and sure'nuff there she was.

License number 8153.  She was first licensed in June, 2000 and let it laspe in February 2006.  Her licensing method was 'credentialing'.  No actions are on file for her. 

I would hope that the dental board has her name red flagged in case she were to ever try and get her licenses there again.  In fact when she, along with Michael DeRose were fined that $10 million last year, didn't the dental board say something about how this would following them no matter where they go, well yeah, it's following them alright.  Following them right along to opening more clinics, bilking (I mean, billing) medicaid and straight to the bank.

When I find out for sure if she opened that new clinic in Asheville, I'll update it here.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Small Smiles Pays School District To Advertise

According to an article in The Colorado Springs Gazette (see here) Small Smiles paid the El Paso County school district 11 $7,000 to advertise on buses, to send post cards home with students in 2004.

This was just prior to the state enacting very strict guideline on papoosing a child for dental work.  The state had to enact this rule due to all the complaints it received from parent about Small Smiles torturous treatment practices.
Michael DeRose didn't speak at the hearing when this new rule was being read however Sen. Maryanne Keller said, "To Voluntarily restrain another individual against their will is the seond worst thing we can do to them."
I bring this up now to show that as far back as 2004 the DeRose's, Forba, Small Smiles and all of it's affiliates knew that people felt this was wrong on so many levels but did they stop before laws and regulations had to be passed?  NO!
Colorado didn't tolerate this behavior for very long   So what did Small Smiles do, they ventured out to other states to find more children to papoose, abuse and traumatize and they've yet to stop!
First I think there is just something wrong with companies being able to solicit their wears to young school children, dental, coke, pepsi, or whatever.
Second, it's clear, unless a state pass regulations that prohibit Small Smiles and those like them to stop abusing children they will continue!  It's 2008 and they are still at it in those states that do not have regulations!
So, States!  What are YOU going to do to stop these people?

FYI: Brad Padula; US Agent Importing Toothbrushes From China

Brad Padula

Brad Padula, pictured above is US Agent for FDA Approved Toothbrushes imported from a company in China called Shanghai Songyang Import and Export Company, LTD. See document from

Shanghai Songyang Import & Export

One might ask, so who cares? What's Brad Padula got to do with any of this anyway?

Well, I'll tell ya. I can connect him directly (can't show you that just yet, but I will) with Smile Starters in North Carolina. That's the Michael DeRose company that was fined the $10 Million dollars back in April for Medicaid fraud, over treating children (16 stainless crowns in one sitting..and more). Remember Michael DeRose is part owner of Forba/Small Smiles (on the board of directors too).

He's the upper management that Arcaptia Bank, out of Bahrain, just outside of Saudi Arabia is doing business with in all these Small Smiles Clinics across the US.

It's uncle Adolph (Rudy) Paula's (Brad's dad, Michael and Dan's uncle) that puts his licenses up in various Small Smiles clinics across the US even though he's not seen a mouth of teeth in years!

A word about Songyang (China International Intellectech Corporation, Shanghai Songyang Import & Export Co., Ltd). As you might know all heavy industry and agriculture in China (The Peoples Republic of China) is State owned. Some large western companies such as General Motors have opened plants in China. These are joint ventures where the State owns the land and GM might own as much as 49% of the joint venture. Only mom and pop size retail establishments can be said to be owned privately. Songyang is State owned. Songyang was established by the State to market the production of the State owned businesses. Add to that the fact that manufacturing labor cost in China is 1/8th (one eighth) that of the United States or Europe.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

More on Todd Cruse and His Testimony In Sen. John Ford Trial.

I thought I would post this since it gives a little background on just where Todd Cruse (divorced) actually came from and how he ended up at Forba. Something tells me someone on here just might need this info and find it useful.

Todd should be considered as SVP of Smooth Operations.  Since he certainly is a "smooth" operator.  He can almost make you believe what he is saying and buy what he is selling.  But it doesn't take long to smell what he is stepping in either....

Was Todd or Dan DeRose for that matter given some kind of deal to testify against Sen. John Ford?  We will probably never know.  I sure hope that was not the case.

At the time all this went down Don Sundquist was governor of Tenneesee and Toad (...LOL...sorry I mistyped then decided to just leave it,..sorry, Todd) Cruse was a top official in Sundquist's administration.
From Commercial Appeal:
By Richard Locker (Contact), Memphis Commercial Appeal
Monday, July 7, 2008
NASHVILLE — NASHVILLE -- The lobbyist for a network of children's dental clinics told jurors this afternoon John Ford was the only Memphis lawmaker he spoke with who would not help his company in its fight with Doral Dental Services to open a clinic in Memphis and that when he asked Ford for help, "He chuckled a bit and said, 'No, they call me Mr. 15 Percent'.''
That exchange between Todd Cruse, a top official in former governor Don Sundquist's administration and later a government relations executive with Forba Dental, occurred in 2003 outside the P.F. Chang's China Bistro in Memphis, Cruse testified.
Prosecutors are trying to prove that Ford used his influence as a powerful member of the state Senate on behalf on Doral Dental Services, with whom he had a consulting arrangement that the government claims paid him more then $400,000, through a firm called Managed Care Consulting Group in which Ford was the lead partner.
Cruse went to work for Forba in January 2003 after the Sundquist administration left office. He first worked on Forba's behalf through a lobbying firm called Public Strategies, and then moved directly to Forba's employment.
Soon after he left state government, Forba became embroiled in a bitter fight with Doral after Doral rejected Forba's efforts to join Doral's network of dental providers across the state that would allow Forba to serve -- and get reimbursed for -- TennCare recipients, primarily children.
That denial, Cruse said, occurred on the day in the spring 2003 that Forba had opened its first Tennessee clinic in Memphis at Knight-Arnold Road and Perkins. That turned out to be the only day it was open, Cruse said, because its business model was to exclusively serve low-income children who were covered by government-paid health insurance programs.
Up until that time, he testified, Forba believed it was en route to being approved by Doral, TennCare's sole contractor to administer dental benefits to TennCare recipients, for inclusion in its network of dental providers. Its dentist and the Memphis facility had been certified by Doral. The only reason Doral gave for the rejection was that its network in Tennessee's urban areas was "adequate."
Cruse said Forba launched a "multi-faceted" campaign to reverse the decision, meeting with black legislators whose constituents were Forba's primary patients, attempting to rally support among ministers and meeting with TennCare officials. That effort included at least two meetings with Ford, in his office and at P.F.Chang's, and a brief conversation in the Legislative Plaza hallway in Nashville.
Cruse said that House Speaker Pro Tem Lois DeBerry, state Rep. John DeBerry, and then-legislators Roscoe Dixon and Kathryn Bowers, all of Memphis, were generally supportive of Forba's efforts. But Ford was not. In the meetings, Ford attempted to lay blame on state TennCare officials rather than Doral.
After the meeting in Ford's office, Cruse testified, he said that Ford's general response was that "the whole situation was silly; it can't be Doral's fault, it was on the back of the TennCare Bureau. It was left open (at that time) whether he would do anything."
But at a later meeting in Memphis, at the restaurant, Cruse said he and other Forba executives told Ford that Forba was seriously considering filing a lawsuit against Doral. "He said it wasn't Doral's problem. It was TennCare's problem," Cruse testified.
Cruse testified the conversation continued as he, Ford and Forba executive Dan DeRose drifted out into Chang's parking lot and Cruse made a last-ditch effort to win the senator's help:
"I said we could really use his help, that the situation was dire. He chuckled a little bit and said, 'No, they call me Mr. 15 Percent."
Cruse testified later under cross examination by Asst. Federal Public Defender Isaiah Gant, Ford's defense attorney, that that remark stood out in his mind. "When a legislator tells you he is known as Mr. 15 Percent, it sticks with you."
Although there was no attempt made to explain the meaning of the statement, Gant attempted to discredit the phrase, getting Cruse to acknowledge that it did not "stick" with him enough for him to report it to authorities. But Cruse said that he had never heard another legislator make such a remark.
In his direct examination by Asst. U.S. Atty. Eli Richardson, Cruse said that at no time did Ford ever let him know that he was doing consulting work for Doral or had any sort of financial arrangement with Doral. He said that would have been good to know as he approached him for help on behalf of Forba, which was fighting Doral.
But under cross examination, Cruse acknowledged that there was no law requiring Ford to notify him that he was working for anyone.
In the final testimony of the day, Doral executive Robert W. Lynn testified how he first learned of his company's consulting contract with Managed Care Services Group -- in late 2004 as Doral was being acquired by DentaQuest Dental Services and Lynn was assigned to assess all of Doral's consulting contracts with an eye toward cutting costs.
Under cross examination, Lynn acknowledged that the firm had consulting contracts for business development in several states and that he was not aware whether Ford's work occurred inside or outside of Tennessee. One of the defense's arguments is that Ford's work was outside of Tennessee, which would apparently not have been illegal.
Under re-direct questioning by Asst. U.S. Atty. David Rivera, Lynn said that to his knowledge, none of the other consulting contracts were with sitting state senators.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Forba To Participate In Study; Shouldn't They Be Doing Something Else With All Their Spare Time!

OH, Dear Lord Above, Please Protect Us From More Forba! Amen.

560 unlucky patients to be recruited for Forba experiment, I mean 'study'!
PEARL Network-Practitioners Engaged in Applied Research and Learning; Forba and the words 'applied research and learning' all in the same paragraph cause one to choke, does it not?

1. Who is funding this?
2. You would think a company needs to be of much higher quality than Forba/Small Smiles before they get into research. And Forba/Small Smiles going to 'study' 'treatment' of anything whatsoever is beyond me believing!
3. Let me 'examine' some 'treatment'!
4. What makes them think they are going to be in business long enough to complete any study!
5. Let me see, isn't Forba the one being 'studied' ...oh say by.... all kinds of State and Federal Agencies!!!!!!!!
6-100. What's wrong with people?
101. Shouldn't a company have qualified dentists to actually participate in a 'study'?!
103. If  PEARL ever had any credibility at all it's gone now!
104.-200. What's wrong with people!

FORBA-Managed Dental Centers to Participate in PEARL Network Study
Multi-year study will examine treatment of deep caries
July 22, 2008 - Nashville, TN – The lead dentists of three FORBA-managed dental centers have volunteered to recruit patients for a multi-year study conducted by The PEARL Network (Partners Engaged in Applied Learning and Research) that will examine treatment of deep caries nationwide.
Management of deep caries close to the dental pulp presents a challenge to both clinician and patient because the prognosis for recommended treatments is not well documented. The PEARL Network study, called Complete versus Partial Removal of Deep Caries: A Comparison Study of Treatment Outcomes (Deep Caries Study), will attempt to shed light on the most effective treatment options.
“The working relationship between FORBA and the PEARL Network will allow for a broader base of clinical studies to include a wider consideration of the population,” said Dr. Frederick Curro, New York University College of Dentistry’s Chief of Pharmacotherapeutic Investigations, who is conducting the PEARL study.
In a survey of PEARL Network members, 80 percent of dentist practitioner-investigators reported removing all caries from deep lesions and 20 percent reported that they only partially remove caries. Based upon this survey’s results and the recent publication of a report that found outcomes of both treatment approaches produced similar outcomes, the PEARL Network designed this effectiveness study to assess treatment outcomes for both procedures in PEARL Network practices.
The specific aims of this research are to:
• Compare the effectiveness between complete and partial caries removal in deep Class I lesions for maintaining tooth vitality at one year post-treatment.
• Assess the effects of deep caries treatment on patients' Post-Operative Hypersensitivity (POH) and Oral Health Related Quality of Life (OHRQoL)
• Evaluate cavity lining and bonding techniques for non-vitality outcome trends in order to design a follow-up prospective intervention study.
The study, currently in its early phases, will recruit 560 patients who will be monitored at 6 and 12-month intervals to examine treatment efficacy.
“FORBA provides dental care to a unique population which provides an opportunity for the PEARL Network to be more inclusive of its clinical studies,” said Dr. Curro. “The synergy between Forba and the PEARL Network will be manifested in the breadth of the patients considered for the clinical studies and in translating the clinical data to all socioeconomic levels.”
Contact: Don Meyer
(202) 898-0995
# # #

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Knott The Dentist

Ya know, all of this crap just burns my butt to no end. I just can't talk about it enough.
Let's take Kenneth Eugene Knott, Dentist At Large.
I'm using him as an example, he certainly isn't the only one doing this for Small Smiles or Kool Smiles either for that matter. There are bunches and bunches of them out there! Rudy Padula, (Adolph Padula), Robert Andrus, Michael DeRose, the list just goes on and on.

On Delta Dental's PPO list he's listed as a dental provider for the Small Smiles in Fort Wayne, IN. If you made an appointment with that clinic I can tell you with 100% certainty that you would NOT see Dr. Knott, nor is he in the building and probably never has been.
He's listed as the dentist at the Small Smiles in Washington, DC, the ones in Cincinnati, and in Kentucky and in Oklahoma and on and on...Arizona, New Hampshire...more and more.

Now look, Dental Boards, what the matter with you people?
If there is a dentist who is applying for a licenses in a state he clearly does not live it that should raise some enormous red flags and I just don't get how it's gotten this outta hand.
It's time to clean this mess up! And I'm not talking about next meeting time either, I'm talking last week.
We all know Kenneth Eugene Knott does not practice dentistry in all of these states, well unless he has one of those cool magic red capes like Superman!

Monday, August 04, 2008

Small Smiles Takes Advantage of Grieving Mother To Patient Shop

You gotta luv Forba and their hired (public relation) gun, Don Meyer of Rubin-Meyer, formerly with Hill & Knowlton.

They've gone and got themselves their very own blog with Don Meyer as its author. (guess they are trying to fight fire with fire)

I know but please stop laughing. I understand it's hard but give it a shot.

It's not much of a blog. It started in May with 1 post and has one or two posts in each month since.

Not much they can say, most of the 9 posts talk in general about dental care to the under served.

One post is about them hiring Dr. Steve Adair, the papoose board expert who at one time warned against using the papoose board and wrote an article outlining how it should be modified in order to ensure the child could get oxygen and breath.

The other posts are reprinted news articles about clinic openings etc. None of the news articles after these clinics have been in operation in a community are posted.

The latest post is the most horrible of all.

It's about this lady who lost her son and holds an event each year that hands out book bags, this year she is teaming up with Small Smiles to offer free dental screenings during her event.

How HORRIBLE that Small Smiles would take advantage of this woman's goodness to patient shop!

This woman and her good graces and grief are being exploited for the gain of Small Smiles and it's a disgrace!

Clearly she knows nothing about Small Smiles operations, fraud, and investigation into these practices by various government agencies.

I'm not going to post the address, but I will say they use one of their big 'buzz' words in the title and it's hosted at blogspot.

Forba, is there nothing you won't do?

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Kool Smiles Law Suit Help Requested

We've got a person who is suing Kool Smiles and is looking for others who have been victims or possibly current or former employees to help with information or possibly make a statement.

If you can help this family please email me at or better yet,

Thursday, July 31, 2008

FORBA's Todd Cruse of Nashville, TN Donates To New Mexico Congressman

Call me stupid. Ok, wait, you would have to get in line to do that but anyway...

Wonder why Todd Cruse in Nashville would contribute a mere $250 to a congressman's campaign. Especially knowing how they work and all, surely he wouldn't expect much in return for that.

But the bigger question is:

Why would Mr. Cruse donate to Ben R. Lujan, a New Mexico Congressman.

You can see for yourself here.


Oh wait! Here it is, straight from Ben's website:

Commissioner Luján has also fought for improved health care for New Mexico consumers by investigating the health-insurance industry's denial practices and spearheading development of legislation that expands access to insurance and closes loopholes. The industry had been using these loopholes to unfairly deny medical claims and void policies.

"Closes Loopholes" ROTF LMAO ROTF LMAO

Think about that a minute, the King of Loopholes, donating to a guy who boasts he 'closes them'. LMAO!

OMG, not a day passes I don't get some kind of 'pee' my pants hearty laugh with this group!

And get this Michael Lindley, FORBA's CEO donated to Ben as well. I guess Mikie makes more than Todd, because Mike donated $1, 000.

I guess Mike and Todd want to join the fight and help close all those 'loop holes'! LMAO!

Next thing ya know, Todd will be on the witness stand again.

But here is the REAL reason: A loan from the state of New Mexico to open a Small Smiles there.

Click Here for the story.


Mario Burgos: Bahrain Investors Collect New Mexico's Tax Dollars

Dr. Robert Andrus Does NOT Really Own Any Small Smiles Clinics In The Sense They Want To Project

This article had been reprinted here before but I felt it was worth reprinting it again along with the link to the original article.

Click here for original.

Anyway, it's important because it's talking about the Small Smiles opening in Roanoke, VA and how it's owned by Robert Andrus and FORBA only manages it for him.

Well, that simply isn't true. Robert Andrus works (or should I say worked, he's no longer with them according to recent reports). On an document that was sent to me listing all employees at FORBA, their phone numbers, email address and their job title Robert Andrus is listed as Senior VP West Region.

In fact he and Kenneth (Ken) Knott, SVP Central Region are listed as being owners as several Small Smiles clinics, especially in states where dental clinics have to be doctor owned. (I guess being doctor owned is subjective as to what percent of ownership isn't it, 1% or 100%?)

If you check phone books of various cities where Small Smiles is located you will see Dr. Robert (Bob) Andrus' name listed on several of them as being the owner and providing services to clients. He is (was) nothing more than a FORBA employee, it's just that simple.

Small Smiles defies traditional system - Low-income children haven't been welcome at most dental practices in the region, at least not without tight restrictions

Dentists suffer with a toothache of sorts over treating patients on government programs. The reimbursement is low, and the hassle is often high. Dentists prefer patients with private insurance or cash, on whom a stable, profitable practice can be built.

But a new Roanoke dental clinic has turned the standard business model on its head.

Four dentists courting the business of low-income children in Western Virginia have opened a practice at Crossroads Mall. Small Smiles caters to children age 20 and younger enrolled in any of the state's health insurance programs: Medicaid, FAMIS and FAMIS Plus. Low-income means people at or below 200 percent of the poverty level, which is $40,000 for a family of four.

It has drawn a huge response, with 2,100 patients booked for appointments before it opened July 31, drawn only by TV commercials and a postcard mailing.

"I think it's going to be successful," said dentist David Jones, who closed his private Roanoke practice to work at Small Smiles. There's so much work, "we could probably keep another clinic like this one afloat."

If the niche sounds unusual, it is: Low-income children haven't been welcome at most dental practices across the region -- at least not without restrictions that close access to new patients when the dentist feels he or she can no longer afford to treat any more.

But last year, Virginia lawmakers intervened. They increased reimbursement for dentists who treat Medicaid-insured children and chopped away red tape for both patient and dentist. Attention was directed at reducing missed appointments; people on Medicaid and related programs miss up to 50 percent of scheduled dental appointments.

National companies that cater to those on government programs have been setting up shop in Virginia. The Small Smiles group, from Pueblo, Colo., has opened 46 practices across the country, including in Roanoke and Richmond. A similar enterprise, Kool Smiles, based in Decatur, Ga., has 17 sites nationwide, including four in Virginia, its Web site said.

"We have a business model that works because this is all we do five days a week, 12 months of the year," said Todd Cruse, speaking for Small Smiles in Roanoke. "We typically average somewhere around 72 to 75 patients a day."

Cruse is chief development officer at FORBA LLC, a dental practice management company in Pueblo, Colorado.

FORBA manages the Roanoke practice for its owner, Colorado dentist Robert Andrus.

Terry Dickinson, executive director of the Virginia Dental Association, was wary when he first heard that a for-proft, corporate dental practice focused on the poor was preparing to operate in Richmond this past spring.

It appeared to be a low-margin business dependent on moving a high volume of patients through, Dickinson said. Might Small Smiles be a "mill" providing the least acceptable care, Dickinson wondered.

So he met with Small Smiles officials. "We made it clear if they chose to come into the state that we would have our eyes on their operation," Dickinson said. Company officials pledged to give quality care and invited state dental industry leaders to drop by unannounced.

Now that the Richmond practice has been up and running for several months, Dickinson is satisfied that Small Smiles is meeting the needs of Virginians, he said, adding there haven't been any patient complaints to his association.

"We are very pleased with what they're doing," Dickinson said.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Another Small Smiles Business Partner Settles Medicaid Fraud Charges

I hardly know where to begin on this entry. What a mess we have here. It might help if you read the entry about the "Tangled Web" before reading this one.

Well, earlier this month we had Doral Dental implicated in the bribery charges of former Tennessee State Senator John Ford. During the trial FORBA/Small Smiles top dogs, Todd Cruse and Dan DeRose even had to take the stand.

Doral Dental execs were so guilty they admitted if they took the stand they would plead the 5th as not to implicate themselves.

Now we have Amerigroup settling the largest ever false claims Medicaid Fraud case in American history at a whopping $225 Million dollars. (somehow no jail time has been imposed)

After WJLA TV's investigation aired about the horrible treatments of children at Small Smiles clinics and the medicaid fraud in and around Washington DC, Amerigroup announced it was requesting Doral Dental to do a thorough investigation of these allegations. (aren't you just about choking right about now?)

Amerigroup contracts with the state

Doral Dental contracts with Amerigroup

Small Smiles contracts with Doral Dental provide dental care to children enrolled in medicaid in Maryland, District of Columbia, Ohio and Georgia.

Don't forget just a few short months ago Dr. Michael DeRose the co-founder of FORBA/Small Smiles paid a $10 million dollar settlement in North Carolina for medicaid fraud.

Something tells me that FORBA/Small Smiles was not exactly shaking in their boots when they were made aware Amerigroup was having Doral Dental look into their business practices, what do you think?

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Buying and Selling of Your Medical Charts: Is this legal?

This post is a bit off topic but thought it deserved some space on my blog.

Recently I was reading a message board and a discussion came up relating to 'buying charts'.

It was about a young dental practice wanting to know how much they should pay per chart if they purchased them from a retiring dentist. (which means there was an offer from the retiring dentist to sell them in the first place right?)

Now something about that just bothers me. I thought my medical charts (dental or otherwise) were somehow a bit more protected than that. The idea that they can be bought and sold really burns my butt not to mention all the HIPPA issues I see that could arise.

Imagine your dentist retiring, soon you get another dentist peddling his services via your mail box or home phone from the info he just bought from your retired dentist.

During this conversation another professional came back and said that you can't really buy charts but you can take over custodianship of them. He advised not paying a dime for them but to offer the retired dentist to take over the charts saving the retiring dentist from having to store, make copies to send to his old patients, sorting them all out etc.

Does the fact that your private medical information, of any kind, can and is bought, sold or traded? Of course I don't guess this is much different than if a professional sold his practice is it? In selling that practice wouldn't the buyer get your charts?

Two Doral Dental Opinions: Both raise questions

When asked about signing up to be a Doral Dental Provider here are a few of the responses:

mc2001 says: I have mostly good things to say in Virginia. The rates are reasonable (reimburse at approximately 60-70% of my practice fees depending on the codes). I collected $2.8 million last year with 8 chairs running 5 days a week.

I get a $30,000-$45,000 check every 9-12 business days, very few claims get denied and they cover most ADA codes that a pedodontist uses. Additionally, I am a participating provider with Delta and once the participating provider adjustment is done, I often find that Medicaid reimburses at a higher rate than Delta.

Sounds like to me this guy (or gal) is saying they get more money from Doral Dental and it's Medicaid reimbursements, then through private pay Delta Dental. Do other dentists know about this, since they argue they won't take medicaid patients due to the low reimbursement rates?

Of course I did take note that is was all about the 'coding' used. Wonder what coding one uses to get that high of a percentage of reimbursement? Creative Coding maybe? Like coding on Oral Hygiene instruction which is telling a two year old to brush his teeth twice a day, (can't tell his parents, they are locked in the waiting room at many clinics) wonder how much that pays?

Of course there are two sides to the flattest pancake so here is another opinion from nanham22:

Run away AS FAST AS YOU CAN. Doral manages Kansas Medicaid and it is the reason we absolutely refuse to see Medicaid patients - we don't get paid on time - MAYBE six months later, if we are lucky; and then, minimal reimbursement.
You can never get anyone to help you with claims. Finally, we had to call the governor's office and our state rep to get claims paid that were over a year old.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Adventure Dental and Vision, yep vision too

Adventure_Dental_Sign Before going any further, I want to warn you that the owner of these clinics worked for and was trained by FORBA and Drs. Michael and Ed DeRose and Dan DeRose as well as Michael Roump of the infamous Small Smiles clinics that mistreat and abuse children and have been accused of medicaid fraud.

Looks like there's yet another dental clinic on the rise catering to low income Medicaid children only this one is going to take care of eye care as well. (I bet FORBA hates they hadn't thought about this new cash cow!)

Adventure Kids Dental and Vision (yes vision is being added I suppose unless there is something about seeing with ones teeth that I'm not aware of).

This place started out in Colorado Springs, CO (yep, Colorado again) as Academy Kids Dental and is the brain child of Ronald (Dr. Ron) Brandon Montano once again another former Small Smiles dentist, like Dr. Tran and Dr. Pham of Kool Smiles being former Small Smiles (Ed and Michael DeRose trained) dentists.

As of right now there is a clinic in Colorado Springs, Colorado another in Greenley, Colorado and one on the east coast in Brockton, Massachusetts and two in the DC area.

This clinics theme is cartoon action hero with the main character being "Captain Smiles". see

And the 'management company' for Adventure Kids Dental, sometimes referred to as Adventure Dental, is Hero Management. (an email address on one of the websites is

So what's the deal with every dental clinic needing it's own personal management company anyway?

Another of it's websites is:

The staff at the Colorado Springs clinics includes Drs. Ron Mantano, Mario Montanez, Melissa Montano and Steven Gould.

The Greenley dentist is Dr. Amy Jorgensen

No one is listed in the Brockton office so it might not be open yet, who knows.

Anyway there are two now opening in the Washington, DC hotbed:

1253 West Pratt Street
Baltimore, MD


1305 Rhode Island Avenue NE
Washington, DC 20018

..both 4746 wonder what special meaning those numbers have to Dr. Ron?

We can only hope that complaints don't come flying in for Adventure Dental. Hopefully Dr. Ron learned what NOT to do while working at Small Smiles in Colorado Springs. I heard he was let go, so that's a good sign since Small Smiles/FORBA doesn't keep dentists who are patient and nice to children.

Time will tell.

Anyway it's looking like the Washington DC, Maryland, Virginia area of the country needs it's own fully staffed task force, complete with a SWAT team to keep a close eye on all the dental clinics for the poor.