Oral surgeon ordered to pay $517,000 for ‘hit and run dentistry’

UNION COUNTY, NJ — An oral surgeon operating in Union County had his license revoked and was ordered to pay $517,000 in restitution and penalties for what the state Board of Dentistry called “hit and run dentistry,” the state Attorney General’s Office announced in a Nov. 26 release.

Dr. Andrew Maron, 58, who owned a string of dental practices in Monmouth, Passaic, Hudson and Union counties, and also practiced as an itinerant oral surgeon in those counties, has been prohibited from practicing in New Jersey since the state filed multiple allegations of negligence, gross negligence and professional misconduct against him in 2015, the Attorney General’s Office said.

The board revoked Maron’s license, finding that his treatment of patients — many of whom were low-income, elderly, or disabled — reflected a “cavalier indifference to his patients’ well-being” and a “pattern of substantial deviations from the standard of care that existed unabated for years.”

According to findings in the case, Maron committed multiple acts of negligence and gross negligence and professional misconduct in his treatment of 17 patients between 2010 and 2015. Among those were:
• pulling natural teeth and replacing them with dental implants with little or no regard to the restorability of the natural tooth;
• placing numerous implants that failed, some dangerously so by migrating into the sinus, or by patients swallowing them;
• performing, planning and undertaking treatment without regard to a patient’s ability to pay;
• discussing treatment with patients who were already in the chair under anesthesia;
• pressuring elderly patients into having implants placed without preoperative diagnosis, review, or informed consent;
• pressuring Medicaid patients into taking CareCredit loans which exceeded their ability to repay;
• ignoring or failing to take patients’ medical histories;
• submitting inaccurate and inflated billing for treatment; and
• failing to ensure that the dentists in his employ practiced with patients’ health, safety and welfare in mind.

The state board’s decision to revoke Maron’s license largely upholds the findings of an administrative law judge who heard the case in a series of hearings that concluded in January.

In an initial decision rendered in May, Administrative Law Judge Susan M. Scarola concluded that Maron’s practice was “so overextended it was almost impossible for him to provide quality care” and that his “repeated acts of negligence and gross negligence, his professional misconduct, his dishonesty and deception, and his lack of providing appropriate and determined care for his patients warrant the severest possible sanction, namely, revocation of his license.”

Following a hearing on July 24, the board adopted Scarola’s findings and conclusions with limited modifications. Those modifications lowered the amount of restitution to one patient, and removed restitution to another patient who already received payment through civil litigation.

The board ordered Maron to pay civil penalties totaling $138,500; restitution totaling $75,041.22 to 15 patients; and aggregate costs and attorneys’ fees of $303,856.22.