28 November 2018

Ms Ensell, has been ordered to pay almost £3,500 by Hastings Magistrates’ Court. 

Following the receipt of a complaint in March 2018, the General Dental Council (GDC) launched an investigation and on 18 July 2018, Ms Ensell held herself out to undercover GDC investigators as being prepared to practise dentistry, namely tooth whitening, using the Hollywood Whitening system.

Under the Dentists Act 1984 and following the High Court's ruling in GDC v Jamous, the legal position in relation to tooth whitening is very clear. The treatment can only be performed by a dentist or a dental therapist, dental hygienist or a clinical dental technician working to the prescription of a dentist.

Katie Spears, Head of In-House Appeals and Criminal Enforcement at the GDC said: “Our primary purpose is to protect the public from harm. Illegal tooth whitening represents a real risk as those who carry it out are neither qualified to assess a patient’s suitability for the treatment, nor are they able to intervene should an emergency arise. When we receive a report of illegal practice, we seek to educate those involved about the dangers and the law in relation to tooth whitening. Where our efforts are ignored, as in the case of Ms Ensell, we will, where appropriate, prosecute in the criminal courts.”

Prosecution details:

  • Katie Ensell, who is not a registered dentist or dental care professional, did unlawfully hold herself out as being prepared to practise dentistry, namely tooth whitening at Complete Health, Eastbourne, and for unlawfully carrying on the business of dentistry, contrary to Section 38 (1) and (2) and Section 41 (1) and (1B) of the Dentists Act 1984.

  • On 23 November 2018 Ms Ensell pleaded guilty to the above offences at Hastings Magistrates’ Court, Bohemia Road, Hastings TN34 1ND.

  • Ms Ensell was fined £500 for each offence and ordered to pay a £50 victim surcharge. Ms Ensell was also ordered to pay costs to the GDC of £2250.86. A collection order of 14 days was made.