Dentists and regulator in clash over ‘punitive’ 64 per cent hike in fees

dentists ARE rebelling against their own regulator in a dispute over “punitive” increases in professional fees.

A special meeting of dentists from England and Wales will be held in December calling for a wholesale review of the General Dental Council (GDC) which they claim has lost the confidence of the profession in the wake of plans to increase compulsory fees by 64 per cent from their current level of £576. Dentists are hoping to remove GDC chairman, Bill Moyes, from his position.

The row has deepened since August when dozens of local dental committees, including a string from Yorkshire, wrote an open letter demanding action.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Jason Wong, spokesman for an alliance of local dental committees leading opposition, said: “We believe that currently the General Dental Council does not understand the very profession it regulates, and is putting access to dental services at risk.

“Put simply, the current General Dental Council has lost the confidence of the profession it regulates.”

In a statement, the GDC said it would meet tomorrow to discuss changes to fees which had been frozen for four years. These were its sole source of funding but since 2010 there had been a 110 per cent increase in complaints about dental professionals and it needed an estimated £18 million to deal with them.

“If the GDC does not have sufficient funds to bring these cases it would fail in its duty to protect patients and the public,” it added.