Storm damage forces dental practice to close

13 February 2024

A Leicester practice remains closed six weeks after damages were sustained during a January storm.

Beautiful Smiles, a private practice, was severely damaged by flood waters during Storm Henk. Water broke through the front door on January 2, and the practice was evacuated quickly.

The practice said that thousands of pounds worth of equipment had been damaged. It added that parts of the building must be rebuilt before they can resume business.

The clean-up process has “not been able to start” as its insurance company, AXA, has not signed off yet. AXA told BBC News it has “provided an interim payment of £40,000 while the claim was analysed.”

Nora Albaldawi, the principal dentist, said, "We don't know when they're going to clean up and strip out. We can't even book anything for rebuilding.

"We didn't even have someone to assess the content so that we can remove it."

Nora said that the practice is renting out a room at another premises so that they could continue to offer treatments. However, she added that only “about a quarter of its usual patients” could be seen.

Victoria Park Health Centre, the neighbouring practice, treats about 26,000 patients. It, too, was damaged as a result of the storm.

Clean-up is underway for Beautiful Smiles. Of the 23 rooms, only six are ready for use to date.