Dentist faces hearing tribunal in brain injury case

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4-year-old Amber Athwal

The investigation by the Alberta Dental Association and College (ADA&C) regarding a complaint about Dr. William Mather has determined that the matter will be referred to a hearing tribunal.

Four-year-old Amber Athwal suffered a permanent brain injury after Mather administered a general anesthetic to her on September 7. The girl stopped breathing at some point and was rushed to the Stollery Children’s Hospital. She has yet to regain consciousness and is at the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital.

“The investigation conducted by the ADA&C to date is only the first step in a multi-step regulatory process under the Health Professions Act,” said Dr. Randall Croutze, Chief Executive Officer for the Alberta Dental Association and College. “The ADA&C appreciates that this is a high-profile case and people are looking for answers. The Hearing Tribunal is the next step in the process to find those answers.”

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The girl’s father Ramandeep Athwal received an email on Wednesday informing him of the decision.

The press statement said: “Under the Health Professions Act, the investigation by the ADA&C Complaints Director only determines if enough evidence warrants that the matter be referred to a Hearing Tribunal. The Hearing Tribunal is a public process that will hear evidence related to a complaint. The Tribunal is comprised of three dentists and a member of the public who will ultimately decide if a dentist is guilty or not guilty of unprofessional conduct.

“Hearings are open to the public, although in some circumstances the Hearing Tribunal may close portions of the hearing in accordance with the Health Professions Act. The Hearing Tribunal must put their decision in writing and the ADA&C shares the decision if requested.” -CINEWS

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