NHS Dental Access Crisis

The BBC has revealed the full extent of NHS dentistry shortage by it’s far-reaching research

Nine in 10 NHS dental practices across the UK are not accepting new adult patients for treatment under the health service, a BBC investigation has found.

In a third of the UK’s more than 200 council areas, they found no dentists taking on adult NHS patients.  And eight in 10 NHS practices are not taking on children.

It was a problem before the pandemic and has got even worse since.

In a report published 2 weeks ago, the House of Commons Health and Social Care Committee described the current dental contract as unfit for purpose and in need of urgent reform to boost recruitment and retention.  Eddie Crouch, chair of the British Dental Association (BDA) tweeted about the situation “We need urgent change to the broken system NHS dentistry is built on. Our patients deserve real reform. That requires political will and fair funding.”

While NHS dental treatment is not free for most adults, it is subsidised.  The BBC heard from people across the UK who could not afford private fees and said the subsidised rates were crucial to getting care.

The lack of NHS appointments has led some people to drive hundreds of miles in search of treatment and others to more desperate measures.

Read the full article here BBC news or view the documentary on iPlayer Disappearing Dentists

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