Judgment: No dentist search for "Ehrenkodex"

OLG Schleswig stops the Chamber of Dentists Schleswig-Holstein
( jur).The Zahnärztekammer Schleswig-Holstein is not allowed to link the practice examinations offered on its websites to an "Ehrenkodex".This leads to misleading consumers and discriminates against dentists who have not signed the "ecclesiastical code", as the Schleswig-Holstein Supreme Court( OLG) in Schleswig decided in an urgent decision announced on Thursday 19 May 2016( ref.: 6U 22/15).

On its website, the dentist's chamber offers patients a practice search. You can search by name, city or postal code, subject areas and additional qualifications. In addition, so far the search criterion "Ehrenkodex" was included and already in the search mask already pre-set. Patients who did not remove the appropriate check were therefore only indicated to dentists who signed the code.

Photo: Photographee.eu - fotolia Bild: Photographee.eu - fotolia

The "ordinance of the Zahnärzteschäft Schleswig-Holsteins" was adopted in 2014 at the General Assembly. In ten "Guiding Principles", the signatories undertake, among other things, to ensure fairness to patients, employees and colleagues, as well as to compliance with the already binding regulations for hygiene or training.

Furthermore, the "ecclesiastical code" also contains health policy statements, especially on the competition and on the priority of freelance individual practice. Specifically, "I do not conclude individual contracts with health insurers, private health insurers or service providers, because such contracts promote cheap medicine, dumping prices and quality deterioration. For me, the owner-led practice is the practice form which is the most equitable to the needs of my patients. Chain practices and practices in the hands of corporations. "

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The complaining dentist had not signed this. From his chamber he demanded that the search criterion "Ehrenkodex" no longer be used. Like the Landgericht Kiel now also the OLG Schleswig rightly. The Chamber of Dentists of Schleswig-Holstein has already done so;it no longer uses the criterion.

In the explanatory statement, the OLG stated that the search criteria "Ehrenkodex" would give the signing dentists an unjustified advantage in the competition for the patients. The impression is made that the "code of ethics" is an equally important criterion for the patients, such as the qualifications.

"This impression is misleading and does not agree with the real circumstances," the Schleswiger judges said. All the statements of the "Ehrenkodex" concerning the patients are in any case "medical and constitutional self-understandings which, for legal reasons, are not to be isolated at all."

The fact that users of the search could remove the checkmark in the search criterion "Ehrenkodex" does not change the legal assessment. For the patients, the OLG in its judgment of May 12, 2016, emphasized that the Chamber of Dentists had made the search "objective and appropriate,"

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