Kids back in NHS
 

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Kids back in NHS

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Kids back in NHS

 

Kids back in NHS

Child only lists are to continue and can be agreed in the new contract, as long as dentists arrange this with their PCT,
says the Department of Health (DoH).

This follows the news last week that thousands of
children would be denied free NHS dental care from next April because dentists will not be able to choose which patients they can treat on the NHS.

The DoH’s chief dental officer, Barry Cockcroft said;: ‘The issue of child only lists has been about clarity, which is why the process has been open for discussion all the way through.

‘We published the regulations in draft form so we could identify areas like this, which might need amendments.’
Cockcroft added that as long as the priority acceptance policy is agreed with the PCT, dentists can continue to treat these patients.

However, dentists cannot accept children on the condition that other patients – such as the children’s parents – pay for treatment privately.

‘That would be a breach of contract,’ said Cockcroft.
Other changes to the contract include the amendment of the repair and replacement changes, which previously did not count as
an activity.

Concerns around the death of those who hold a contract have also been aired.

Originally, there were only seven days to replace the contract, with an option to extend this to 28 days. ‘We’ve provided a longer period and changed this to three months with the option to extend this to another three months’, stated Cockcroft.

The core hours have also been reviewed, allowing dentists to work normal practice hours.

In addition, PCTs can no longer terminate a dentist’s contract unless they have breached it. ‘There was an 18-month termination period for a PCT but now this does not apply,’ stressed Cockcroft.

Finally, the tolerance has been raised from 2% to 4% to allow for the variations that occur in dentists’ prescribing patterns.
For confused dentists, or those thinking of abandoning the NHS ship, Cockcroft said; ‘Dentists have been worked up to accept the worst but they should wait until they get their contract and then decide.

‘There are a lot of opport-unities for dentists but if they have any doubts at all they should go and discuss them with their PCT.’

Responding to the changes, Nick Patsias, vice chairman of the federation of London Local Dental Committees said; ‘These two statements are contradictory as any dentist with a child only list WILL be treating the children's parents privately.

‘As for the flexibility figure being raised to 4% from 2% -this is of little value because the practitioner has to make this
up in a set period whatever the figure.’

 Posted on : Fri 11th - Nov - 2005

 

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