Can I report a patient to the police if they have threatened a member of staff?

You can, but bear in mind the patient's pain or anxiety could be a factor in their behaviour, so document your reasons for reporting the patient carefully.

It's also advisable to have a 'zero tolerance' policy in place covering how abusive and threatening behaviour from patients will be treated.

When reporting the incident to the police, you should only disclose the minimum information necessary to allow them to investigate. For example, it's not usually necessary to give details of the dental treatment the patient received.

This page was correct at publication on 24/11/2021. Any guidance is intended as general guidance for members only. If you are a member and need specific advice relating to your own circumstances, please contact one of our advisers.