Patient Complaints

When the MDA receives complaints from patients about dental care, there are two options available: The MDA Peer Review Program (if complaint qualifies) or the Missouri Dental Board complaint process.

Peer Review

Peer Review is not a court and has no disciplinary function. It merely provides an alternative dispute resolution mechanism, at no cost to either party. Peer Review is a process by which the dental profession reviews and attempts to resolve dental treatment problems and misunderstandings through mediation.

The purpose of the Peer Review system is to resolve disputes that may arise in the delivery of dental services to the public.

Unbiased, objective and timely reviews are conducted using the MDA Peer Review format for addressing disputes between patients, dental care providers and third-party carriers.

The MDA Peer Review Committee consists of MDA member dentists who volunteer their time and expertise to review and assist patients. They may meet to discuss the case and may examine clinical records, talk to the dentist and patient and, when indicated, arrange for a clinical examination.

Matters accepted for MDA Peer Review

  • The treatment in question must have occurred in the past 12 months.
  • Appropriateness of Care: The Peer Review Committee shall determine the professional acceptability of planned or completed treatments, consistent with diagnosis. In other words, did the dentist provide appropriate treatment for the condition that existed?
  • Quality of Treatment: The Peer Review Committee shall determine the acceptability of completed treatment based on the standard of care expected by the profession. In other words, was the treatment performed by the dentist done correctly?

Matters not accepted for MDA Peer Review

  • Any complaint that doesn't concern the appropriateness of care or quality of care is not accepted.
  • If the case involves a fee or billing dispute, it is not accepted.
  • Complaints of poor customer service, practice management or concerning a staff member's behavior are not accepted.
  • If either party has contacted an attorney, even if litigation has not been initiated, the case will not be accepted.
  • If a complaint already has been filed with the Missouri Dental Board, it will not be accepted.

Complaint Forms

After reviewing the criteria above, if you wish to submit your complaint to the MDA Peer Review program, download and complete this form. If the complaint does not qualify for MDA Peer Review, patients may complete a complaint form available from the Missouri Dental Board. Patients may view discipline actions of the Dental Board.