[Marxism] "Poor dentists who don't improve could lose their licenses to practice."

lshan at bcn.net lshan at bcn.net
Sun Feb 8 12:58:22 MST 2004

This is circulating widely on the internet. It was sent to my wife by a
fellow-teacher. The bare bones of it is here:
. . .

"Did you hear about the new state program to measure the effectiveness of
dentists with their young patients?" I said.

"No," he said. He didn't seem too thrilled. "How will they do that?"

"It's quite simple," I said. "They will just count the number of cavities
each patient has at age 10, 14, and 18 and average that to determine a
dentist's rating. Dentists will be rated as Excellent, Good, Average, Below
Average or Unsatisfactory. That way parents will know which are the best

"It will also encourage the less effective dentists to get better," I said.
"Poor dentists who don't improve could lose their licenses to practice in
South Carolina." 

"That's terrible," he said.

"What? That's not a good attitude," I said. "Don't you think we should try
to improve children's dental health in this state?"

"Sure I do," he said, "but that's not a fair way to determine who is
practicing good dentistry."

"Why not?" I said. "It makes perfect sense to me."

"Well, it's so obvious," he said. "Don't you see that dentists don't all
work with the same clientele; so much depends on things we can't control?
"For example," he said, "I work in a rural area with a high percentage of
patients from deprived homes, while some of my colleagues work in upper
middle class neighborhoods. Many of the parents I work with don't bring
their children to see me until there is some kind of problem and I don't get
to do much preventive work."

"Also," he said, "many of the parents I serve let their kids eat way too
much candy from an early age, unlike more educated parents who understand
the relationship between sugar and decay."

"To top it all off," he added, "so many of my clients have well water which
is untreated and has no fluoride in it. Do you have any idea how much
difference early use of fluoride can make?"

"It sounds like you're making excuses," I said. I couldn't believe my
dentist would be so defensive. He does a great job.

"I am not!" he said. "My best patients are as good as anyone's, my work is
as good as anyone's, but my average cavity count is going to be higher than
a lot of other dentists because I chose to work where I am needed most."
. . .

"What's the DOC?" he asked.

"It's the Dental Oversight Committee," I said, "a group made up of mostly
lay persons to make sure dentistry in this state gets improved."
. . .

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