NHS dental services need investment to stop this rot – Yorkshire Post Letters

What is the future of dentistry?What is the future of dentistry?
What is the future of dentistry?
From: Paul Stones, Wadworth, Doncaster.

I WOULD venture to say that the Department of Health (DoH)spokesperson quoted in your article (Region hit by rise in cases of mouth cancer, The Yorkshire Post, November 24) has missed the point.

The spokesperson claims that they are committed to detecting more mouth cancers at an early stage and that every dentist is expected to fully assess their patient’s oral health and to look for the signs of cancer.

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To the best of my knowledge and experience, dentists do indeed examine the soft tissues of the mouth during the check-up. It is not only a contractual obligation but one of professional standards. However, to benefit from such an examination, a patient has to be able to get an appointment with an NHS dentist and therein lies the problem.

Covid is having a serious impact on dentistry.Covid is having a serious impact on dentistry.
Covid is having a serious impact on dentistry.

Access to NHS dentistry has been an issue for many years and continues to be so.

Over 10 years ago, the DoH began a project to review the contract under which dentists provided services to the NHS. Dentists and the DoH recognised that the system introduced in 2005 did not generate a sufficient increase in access to NHS dentistry and did not encourage or reward dental practices for providing a preventative care approach.

However, and again to the best of my knowledge, NHS dentistry is still being delivered under the contractual terms introduced 15 years ago. I don’t know what has happened to this pilot project.

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I think that the DoH should perhaps simply consider that NHS dental services need greater financial investment to enable more dental care professionals to be engaged. They would then be able to carry out more routine check-ups and hopefully detect greater numbers of oral cancer at an early stage.

From: Hilary Andrews, Nursery Lane, Leeds.

MY son, daughter-in-law, son-in-law and grandson are all doctors working in the hospitals dealing with Covid patients.

They and their colleagues are all exhausted. I hope people can be really sensible over Christmas and not increase the workload of all those in the NHS.

The vaccine is just around the corner, can’t we all be patient and meet up when it’s safe?

No negative headlines

From: Marilyn S Shaw, Thornhill, Dewsbury.

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I, AND many others, have turned away from watching the news, particularly the BBC, because of the way journalists question. In these unusual and fearful times we do not need to have negativity in headlines and ‘opinions’ from journalism.

Early on, when I did watch the news, I found the journalists to be inquisitors – more in keeping with the Spanish Inquisition.

I still turn off when they start with all the negativity and views that are not necessarily representative of the majority of people who are reasonable and happy to follow Government guidelines. We should all bear in mind this is worldwide and not solely in the UK. If we all took care and thought about others instead of ‘me, me, me’, perhaps we would be in a better place.

Bad news is not what we want to hear!

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