A new College of Dentistry is born
 

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A new College of Dentistry is born

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A new College of Dentistry is born

 

A new College of Dentistry is born

Dentistry magazine can exclusively reveal plans to create a new College of Dentistry. The two faculties resident at the Royal College of Surgeons (the Faculty of Dental Surgery and the Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK) are to combine to create one ‘College of Dentistry’.

In an article to be published in The Royal College of Surgeons Bulletin this month, the two deans, Brian Avery and Mike Mulcahy, will make the historic announcement. In October 2005 the FGDP(UK) Board voted unanimously that closer collaboration should be investigated, with a view to the creation of a ‘College of Dentistry’.

A few days later, the FDS Board also unanimously agreed to the same course of action. In December 2005 the RCS Council supported outline proposals to move towards the creation of a new college within the RCS.

There are faculties of dental surgery at the colleges of Edinburgh, Glasgow and Ireland, but this is fragmented.
Perhaps this fragmentation is one reason why the concept has not been developed. There are established royal colleges of surgeons, physicians, psychiatrists, general practitioners, nursing, and speech and language therapists but not a college of dentistry.

‘In comparison with the others, dentistry is a relatively small profession with a total of around 30,000 dentists registered within the UK; however, a single recognised academic home for the whole profession is overdue’, said Mike Mulcahy.

The reason for the faculties existing within the royal colleges of surgeons is historic. Dentistry is a surgical discipline and treatment modalities from restorative dentistry through to extractions require the removal of tissue.

There is increasing collaboration between the two faculties and, in particular, work is now advancing to merge the two membership examinations of MFGDP(UK) and MFDS, probably in 2007.

Additionally, it has been accepted by many bodies within dentistry that it is unfair to ask new graduates to choose between two examinations at such an early stage in their careers. Dental careers should offer flexibility and the choice afforded by either exam is restrictive.

The Faculty of Dental Surgery (FDS) in England was founded in 1947 and has developed expertise in postgraduate education, hospital inspection and examinations. It has developed an international committee to offer this expertise to other countries. The FDS is also the home for the national advisory committee for postgraduate dental education, which deals with overseas dentists and is on the point of becoming the administrative headquarters for the Craniofacial Society of Great Britain and Ireland.

The Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK), or FGDP(UK), was formed in 1992 to provide an academic voice for the 90% of dentists who practise in primary care. It arose out of the FDS advisory board. The FGDP(UK) now has an advisory board for dental care professionals (DCPs) and through this, encompasses the whole primary dental care team.

Dean Mike Mulcahy said: ‘Together, the FDS and the FGDP(UK), under the umbrella of the RCS and within a College of Dentistry, could redefine standards, training and assessments, which would improve the care delivered to our patients. Who knows, one day maybe we could be looking at a ‘Royal College of Dentistry’’.

These proposals will be subject to a future formal consultation with the membership of each faculty


 Posted on : Fri 3rd - Mar - 2006

 

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