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The NI HDS Forum also provides an important channel of communication between Hospital dental staff and BMA NI who negotiate the terms and conditions of service for Hospital Dentists.

The NI HDS Forum establishes a space to discuss the issues that are most important to Northern Ireland’s Hospital Dentists, and to ensure those issues are taken forward for further consideration. A sub-group of the NI HDS Forum is involved with the organisation of CPD study days, events, and courses specially tailored to the interests of Hospital Dentists.

Our priorities

  • Represent the views of all BDA Hospital Dentist members in NI
  • Address key issues including DCT pay, pensions, and HDS workforce issues
  • Considering the issues facing hospital dentists
  • Help to inform BMA NI negotiations on behalf of Hospital Dentists in NI
  • Take forward industrial action on behalf of hospital BDA members
  • Report back from discussions/key outcomes at BMA committees to the BDA
  • Reports into BDA NI Council to inform its work on behalf of all dentists
  • Establish two-way communications directly between BDA NI and Hospital members in NI
  • Support and inform quarterly discussions between BDA NI and BMA NI staff on relevant issues.

Our team


Darren Johnston

Darren qualified as a dentist from the Queens’ University of Belfast and went on to train as an orthodontist at Glasgow Dental School before undertaking further training to become a Consultant Orthodontist. Darren specialises in the treatment of children and adults with facial deformity including cleft lip and palate. Darren is the Regional Cleft Orthodontist for Northern Ireland, Chair (elect) Hospital Dental Services Forum, Chair of Northern Ireland Consultant Orthodontic Group, BDA rep on BMA Northern Ireland Consultant Committee, NI rep on UK Consultant Orthodontic Group and NI rep on the Orthodontic Clinical Excellence Group (sub-group of Craniofacial Society for GB & Ireland). BMedSci, BDS, FDS (RCS Ed), MOrth, MMedSci, FDS(Orth). Voting member.
Darren Johnston

Get involved and get in touch

The Chair of the NI HDS Forum is Darren Johnston. NI HDS Forum provides the link between the BDA's membership and the policy decisions taken on their behalf. As a forum rather than a formally constituted committee, membership has a more informal approach to ensure that we have representation. Membership represents all grades and specialties of Hospital Dentists: DCTs, StRs, SAS, and Consultants employed in hospitals across Northern Ireland.

If you would like to get in touch with the NI HDS Forum, please contact [email protected] to discuss any queries or provide further information.