Monday, February 01, 2010

Dental Records for Canadians Missing in Haiti

Hi everyone,

One of the sad aspects of being a dentist is being asked by authorities for chart records to identify victims of disasters such as those in the Haitian earthquake zone. Quoted below is the (edited for brevity) text of an electronic bulletin from the Canadian Dental Association (CDA) with respect to the relief efforts in Haiti:

The massive earthquake that recently struck Haiti has affected an estimated 3 million people according to the Canadian Red Cross, resulting in extreme injuries and significant loss of life. As of January 22, over 300 Canadians are still unaccounted for in Haiti.

Canada is responding to the disaster in several ways including providing troops and personnel for humanitarian aid, search and rescue, and disaster victim identification (DVI). Dental records are one of the most important sources of identification for all DVI efforts. Since Canada has such a high standard of dental care, dental records will form the basis of the positive identification of missing Canadian citizens. Using dental records is a highly accurate and inexpensive method of identifying a person during a disaster.

Original dental records and radiographs of all types are needed to help identify missing citizens. Chief coroners, chief medical examiners and/or police departments in each province will develop a list of missing and presumed deceased persons. They will then attempt to acquire antemortem records for these people, including dental records from treating dentists and data from other sources such as medical records, fingerprints or DNA.

As always your generosity to the people of Haiti is needed at this time...please give generously.

Source: (email) CDA Alert, Jan 22, 2010, Dental Records for Canadian Missing in Haiti, Canadian Dental Association,

Take Care

Hans Skariah, B.Sc., DMD
Promenade Court Dental Health Group in Mississauga
2233 Hurontario St., Mississauga, ON, Canada
(1/2 km north of the QEW in the Dome Building)
(905) 273-7100