He had the wrong name at the wrong time, but Dr. David Wu who formerly practised dentistry in Burnaby wants his patients to know they're not at risk.
When news broke last week about David (Tung Sheng) Wu illegally practising as a dentist out of his home in Burnaby, the other Dr. Wu was getting ready to go on a flight to Toronto.
The Fraser Health Authority put out a warning to the illegal dentist's former 1,500 patients to get tested for Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV. The news reports flew across the province - but not many mentioned that there was also a legitimate dentist of the same name who had practised in Burnaby and North Vancouver.
"I had my office in Burnaby up until 2010 for about nine years," Wu told the NOW in a phone interview from Toronto. "The problem is, I have actually tried to contact some of my (former) patients from Burnaby within the last few days and actually, none of them have seen the correction. Most of them don't think it was me, particularly the patients I know well."
But not all of Dr. Wu's patients may realize they've got the wrong guy.
"I am certain my patients who had seen me 10 years ago or eight years ago think I'm the same guy (as Tung Sheng Wu) and might worry they may have caught something from me," he said.
Wu practised in North Vancouver from 1974 to 2000 before moving to his Hastings Street location in Burnaby.
"It's affected me greatly," Dr. Wu said of the mixup. "The first few days I was frantically trying to get the message out."
When news broke, and a press conference was called, it was not immediately shared that there was another Burnaby dentist with the same name.
"If they only had said this has nothing to do with David Wu, the legitimate dentist from Burnaby," he said. "When people first heard the news, my best friend, who I practised with sent me the article. And I said, 'By the way, if you didn't know me this well, would you have confused me with the other guy?' I was shocked when he said, 'Yes, my first thought was that it was you because how many other dentists in Burnaby are named David Wu?'" Wu said he has received negative comments directed at him, but he's since spoken to other newspapers, Global TV and the CBC - and he hopes that's enough to get the information out to his former patients.
"I'm exhausted from the interviews," he added.
/ David Wu retired dentist;
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