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Dentist in HIV scare used dirty equipment

A DENTIST at the centre of a HIV scare routinely used dirty equipment and the same gloves for multiple patients, telling staff to continue to do so even after inspectors raised concerns.

Lawyers representing hundreds of Ayrshire dental patients treated by Alan Morrison have revealed that inspectors alerted the health board to potential safety breaches in September last year. Inspectors warned Mr Morrison to make improvements after visits to his premises in Millbank and Drongan revealed that staff had little or no training in cleaning dental instruments and were routinely using the same gloves for multiple patients.

However, two months later a whistleblower told inspectors he had made little effort to improve hygiene. The witness claimed the dentist told staff never to discuss with the health board or media what was going on at both surgeries.

It emerged in March that some 5,000 patients registered at the practices had been sent letters inviting them to take tests for HIV and Hepatitis B and C following exposure to unsterilised dental equipment, including scaling equipment and amalgam guns for fillings. To date, no patients have tested positive.

Mr Morrison was struck off the dental register in 2005 after allowing an inmate at Kilmarnock jail to inject another prisoner with a sedative, but returned to work with conditions.

Patrick McGuire, of Thompsons solicitors, said: "This FOI has laid bare the full extent of Mr Morrison's total disregard. The list of discoveries made by health inspectors make truly shocking reading."

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