A former manager of a dental office in the Bronx posed as a dentist before being caught.
Valbona Yzeiraj, 45, referred to herself as “Dr. Val’ even though she did not have a dentistry license. However, not having a license did not stop her from practicing dentistry on five patients. She performed “risky and complicated procedures,” according to The New York Times (4.16.15), citing the Bronx district attorney’s office.
Yzeiraj dressed in a lab coat and took X-rays, administered anesthesia and performed one known root canal. Her boss was apparently unaware of the situation as she only practiced dentistry while he was out of the office. Plus, she only accepted cash as payment.
Treatment by an unlicensed dentist or doctor is dangerous and could result in injury, disease or even death. When unlicensed people treat patients they may put them at risk. Prosecutors said at least two of the people treated by Yzeiraj suffered physical injury. One still experiences lingering pain two years after one of her procedures and another had an infection after a root canal, reported the Times.
Negligence describes a situation when someone does something accidently wrong and their action causes someone else to get hurt. It can be as simple as failing to see a stop sign and driving through it. Or, it could be more complicated.
Recklessness involves conscious behavior that is short of actual intent to cause harm, but greater than negligence. Unlike negligence, recklessness means that a person knowingly takes a risk without concern about the consequences. Yet, the person committing the reckless act does not actually mean to cause harm to anyone. Practicing dentistry on patients without a license, even without actually intending to cause them harm, could be seen as reckless behavior.
People can be held liable for any damages they cause to another person through their negligent or reckless behavior. Their victims may recover compensation for any resulting medical expenses, lost wages, rehabilitation, pain, suffering and more.
As reported by The New York Times, Yzeiraj, told patients she worked as a dentist in her native Albania. The NYT said that the district attorney’s office found that there was “no indication that she had ever studied or practiced dentistry in any country.” Most importantly, she was not licensed to practice dentistry in New York State.
Individuals who have been harmed by the negligence of another should contact an experienced lawyer. Lawyers at The Perecman Firm can help hold accountable all responsible parties and help a victim recover maximum compensation for damages.