Neil Carmichael, Chair of the ADG has welcomed the comments in the House of Commons last Thursday by Government Health Minister Jo Churchill MP (top) that she has “…asked officials and NHSE to ensure that high-quality preventive work is at the forefront of future provision and that a transformation in commissioning takes place.” To read a transcript of the debate click here.
Neil continued: “The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the need more than ever for reform of the current UDA contract for NHS dentistry and the introduction of wider preventative measures such as water fluoridation. MPs from all political parties in the debate highlighted dissatisfaction with the 2006 UDA contract for NHS dentistry which the Minister recognised “does not work particularly effectively.
“Last week’s debate highlighted the professions concerns about reintroducing UDA targets at a time of national lockdown. However, what was also clear was a cross party consensus that the current UDA contractual arrangements for delivering NHS dental care are broken and have a negative impact on the profession’s morale.
“The Minister’s response to the debate that a transformation in commissioning is needed to ensure that high-quality preventative work is at the forefront of future provision must be welcomed.”
He adds: “The current backlog in dentistry will continue throughout this year and moving a focus onto flexible commissioning and preventative measures is one way we can limit and recover the damage to the nation’s oral health in the future.”
“The case for water fluoridation has never been stronger and I am pleased to see the Minister also express her support for it. For the benefit of children’s future health, I hope action will soon follow.”