Mandated Reporting Requirements
Dentists are mandated reporters of abuse and neglect. However, it's important to remember that under Massachusetts law, mandated reporters are protected from liability in any civil or criminal action and from any discriminatory or retaliatory action by an employer.
With 75% of physical abuse cases resulting in injuries to the head, neck, and/or mouth, the dental community is in a fundamental position to be the first advocates for patients suffering from abuse and neglect.Studies conclusively state that health care professionals who acknowledge that abuse has occurred have a positive impact on their patients. The dental team's role in combating abuse and neglect includes recognition and referral. By being observant and reporting suspected cases, you can help shield your patients, both young and old, from violence and neglect.