Iowa dentist fined $5K for threatening patient over negative online review

An Iowa dentist was fined $5,000 by the Iowa Dental Board for leaving a threatening voicemail to a patient over a negative online review, the Iowa Capital Dispatch reported Dec. 15. 

William Skinner, DDS, left a voicemail threatening a patient with court action after a negative review was posted online for his Urbandale dental practice. The patient denied writing the review, but Dr. Skinner reportedly thought he knew who the reviewer was based on past comments made by that patient.

Dr. Skinner denied the voicemail was threatening but did acknowledge that it could be perceived that way by others, according to board documents.

In addition to the fine, the board warned Dr. Skinner that any future violations could result in further disciplinary action. Dr. Skinner was also required to complete an educational course entitled "Elevating Civility and Communication in Health Care." 

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