Major boost for salaried dentistry in UK
By DoH, UK
Mar 15, 2006, 07:47

Salaried dentists in UK will see their careers modernised and pay reviewed health minister Rosie Winterton announced today as she visited The Lister Centre in south London.

Meeting salaried dentists at the Centre, Rosie Winterton confirmed that consultation responses supported proposals for reviewing pay, terms and conditions to support career modernisation. Among the proposals now being taken forward are:

* designing career paths that acknowledge, develop and reward the crucial role of salaried primary care generalists
* supporting the development of Dentists with Special Interests through a clear framework of development and reward within the general career path
* recognising and remunerating primary care-based specialists and trainees in specialities recognised by the General Dental Council in the same way as their hospital-based counterparts

The consultation Creating the Future - Modernising careers for Salaried Dentists in Primary Carefollowed a review of salaried dentistry which involved the British Dental Association [BDA], patient representatives and NHS management, and it set out high-level proposals for change, set within the context of the overall reform programme for wider NHS dentistry.

NHS Employers will now undertake negotiations based upon the proposals set out in Creating the Future, with a view to new terms and conditions of service being introduced from April 2007. NHS Employers has been asked to work in partnership with the BDA to agree the new terms and conditions that will support the modernisation of careers, support high-quality patient care, and increase the amount invested in salaried dentists pay by up to 10%. These reforms will be designed to ensure appropriate appraisal and personal development planning, linked to General Dental Council requirements, become an integral part of the new arrangements for salaried dentistry.

Health minister Rosie Winterton said of the proposals for salaried dentists:

"The overwhelming support in the consultation for these reforms reflects the value these services provide, and the career benefit dentists feel from having the option of salaried employment. This is why it is so important we now push ahead with the modernisation of careers for salaried dentists in primary care.

"Salaried dentists have a long and important tradition as an essential part of the overall provision of dentistry in this country, looking particularly after the dental needs of children and other vulnerable groups, including those with special needs. In many places they also play a vital role in ensuring access to NHS primary dental care. It is important that, like their colleagues in other branches of medicine and dentistry, their roles and working conditions support the delivery of high quality clinical services for patients, and recruitment and retention of staff."

Acting Chief Dental Officer Barry Cockcroft added:

"These reforms will create a new pay scale for salaried primary care dentists which rewards competence, contribution and experience. The reforms will also ensure that specialists working in the salaried parimary dental care services will benefit from the same terms and conditions of service as their equivalents in the hospital dental services. This is great news for salaried dentists and supports the crucial service they perform."

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