The Knutsford Guardian reported that Beatrice Luciola, who ran the Beyond Dental Care practice in Knutsford, was suspended by the General Dental Council (GDC) in 2018 following a host of complaints from patients. The Kenyan-born orthodontist received more than £8,500 upfront from two patients in 2017 for treatment before cancelling the appointments and failing to provide refunds. The lease on the practice expired in December 2017 before Ms Luciola abandoned her patients and returned to Kenya in 2018, where it was believed she was living and practising under her maiden name.
Following her suspension and the subsequent investigation, the GDC imposed the highest sanction by striking Ms Luciola’s name from the register in order to protect the public. The GDC professional conduct committee, found proved a number of serious allegations against Ms Luciola relating to the following:
- her dishonest claims on her website with regard to professional membership of a number of associations, including the British Dental Association and the British Orthodontic Society
- her persistent management failings at her practice and, in particular, failures to employ sufficient administrative support or nursing support
- her conduct from about November 2017 in the lead up to the closure of her practice, which included findings of dishonest enticement of payment from two patients
- her abandonment of her patients following the closure of her practice on December 5, 2017
- her failure to co-operate with the investigation conducted by the GDC into her fitness to practise, which included her failure when requested to provide patient records, proof of her indemnity and consent to undergo a health assessment
The committee said:
“It was the view of the committee the dishonesty found proved in this case represented serious departures from a number of GDC standards.
“The committee was in no doubt that Ms Luciola’s dishonesty was at the high end of the scale.
“Taking this into account, together with its concerns about Ms Luciola’s attitude, the committee concluded the only appropriate and proportionate sanction to protect the public is erasure.”