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Updates from week commencing 20 June 2022

Read all the updates that took place throughout this week.

Friday 24 June 2022


Website maintenance this weekend

We are carrying out planned security updates on our website this weekend. Due to the nature of the changes, the website will be unavailable.


Updates will start on Saturday evening, and we anticipate the website being available again on Sunday morning.


The CPD Hub and the library's online catalogue will not be affected.




Wales: Open event for GDPs


We're holding a free online event for GDPs on Monday 4 July 2022, 19:00 to 21:00.


There will be a series of short talks led by the Welsh General Dental Practice contract negotiating team: Russell Gidney, Dan Cook and Ravdeep Johal. Russell, Dan and Ravdeep are all practice owners in Wales.


Aims are to:

  • Gather your views on how well the contract offer is working
  • Hear from dentists who opted for the default UDA contract
  • Hear from dentists who have left NHS provision or are planning to do so

We'll use this information to run a Wales-wide survey over summer, which will help inform a report to the Senedd Health and Social Care Committee in the Autumn.


The talks will be followed by a Q&A session, for which you are encouraged to submit any questions in advance to


All dentists and dental care professionals are welcome to attend.





England: Dentistry top issue as government defeated in by-election. 


Reports this morning suggest NHS dentistry ranked alongside issues with local schools and 'Partygate' in fuelling the Conservatives' landslide defeat in the Tiverton by-election.


"The Tiverton by-election underlines the real political cost of failure to fix the crisis in NHS dentistry," says BDA Chair Eddie Crouch

"It's easy to understand why the inability to access basic healthcare services is resonating on the doorstep. The barriers facing millions of people in pain are made in Westminster. Until government turns the page on a decade of underfunding and failed contracts we will not see progress. Patients and voters deserve better."


The news comes in a week in which MPs have pressed Ministers for urgent change in NHS dentistry in two major debates and follows our warning to the Health and Social Care Committee last month that the service faces 'slow death' without real reform and fair funding. 


GDPC Chair Shawn Charlwood has examined the issues in his recent blog 



Thursday 23 June 2022



England: Routine asymptomatic testing


Dental staff should still be taking LFTs twice weekly and the results should be reported.


The most recent England CDO's "Dental framework" says that testing should be carried out for staff in line with any national policies, and the current policy is outlined here.


Patient-facing staff should continue to test twice weekly when asymptomatic and if they receive a positive LFD test result, they should follow the isolation advice.





England: Mandatory training on learning disabilities and autism


From 1 July 2022, all health and social care providers registered with the CQC must ensure that their staff receive training on learning disabilities and autism. This new legal requirement is introduced by the Health and Care Act 2022.


Following the introduction of this requirement, the CQC will be looking to see whether providers have provided learning disability and autism training, and assess the competencies of their staff following the training. 


The publication of the Code of Practice may take at least 12 months, but the CQC will provide statutory guidance while the Code of Practice is being developed.


The Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training is based on the Core Capabilities Frameworks for Supporting People with a Learning Disability and for Supporting Autistic People. It has also been co-designed by autistic people, people with a learning disability, family carers and subject matter experts.





Northern Ireland: Out of Hours Emergency Clinics


We have campaigned for the re-establishment of Out of Hours Emergency Dental Centres (EDCs) post-pandemic as a matter of priority. The Department has today issued a further call for Expressions of Interest from practitioners in the Belfast, South Eastern, Southern and Northern LCG areas.


Members are asked to complete the Expression of Interest form by 30 June. These re-established OOH EDCs will be operational from 30 July. In the interim, GDS Correspondence has been issued regarding the Urgent Dental Care Centres and cover for the July holiday period.


England: Pressure mounting on contract reform

This week MPs have been pressing Ministers for urgent and meaningful reform of NHS dentistry.

We have been working closely with members on both sides of the House to spell out the need for urgent change. Following hours of debate, we have key updates on:

  • The likely shape of Q2 targets 
  • The modest, marginal changes set to be announced this side of summer  
  • The future for fundamental reform of the NHS contract.   
GPDC Chair Shawn Charlwood has commentary on all these issues and more in his recent blog.

Wednesday 22 June 2022


England: Facemasks no longer mandatory

We can confirm that facemasks are no longer mandatory and that, following a risk assessment, practices should make their own decisions about how and when patients are treated or what PPE is required.

Staff are not required to wear facemasks in non-clinical areas such as reception, offices, or the staff room. Staff may wear a facemask if it is a personal preference or if there are specific issues raised by a risk assessment which require one to be worn. More information is available in our recent update and our version of the risk assessment  can be amended to suit your individual practice.

In addition, patients are no longer required to wear a facemask unless it is a personal preference, but patients with respiratory symptoms who attend for treatment should wear a facemask/covering if able to. If you wish to do so, you may offer a mask to patients on arrival.


Rising inflation impacts annual allowance

Due to rising inflation, many members under NHS Pension Schemes will now breach Annual Allowances (AA), meaning that larger AA tax charges will apply. The impact will be felt the most if you have pension benefits which revalue in line with inflation (GDP’s with dynamised 1995/2008 NHS pensions or anyone with a 2015 NHS pension).

We have updated our AA Advice to include a new section, outlining how recent inflationary changes could impact your pension. It is impossible to accurately forecast any individual dentist’s pension but if you use an accountant or financial advisor you may wish to consider sharing this information with them. We have also reached out to the government to outline possible solutions to the problem and we will keep you updated.


Northern Ireland: Reform and workforce issues must be tackled

Last week we met with the new Permanent Secretary at the Department of Health, Peter May. During this meeting we stressed the importance of tackling much-needed contract reform. 

We also discussed the urgent need for a Dental Workforce Plan, to ensure we have the staff we need in the future. Tristen Kelso's latest blog gives an overview of these issues: 

"After years of stagnation and delay, we emphasised how vital it has become to get dental reform over the line at a time when the pressures in HS dentistry are so severe that the very future of HS dentistry is at stake."

Tuesday 21 June 2022


Support Learning Disability Week

This week is Learning Disability Week and we've put together some tips on things you can do to support patients with learning disabilities and make their dental visits a more positive experience.

People with learning disabilities may have sensory sensitivities, so the prospect of visiting a dental surgery with strange sounds, odd smells and bright lights can be anxiety inducing. Some of the things you can do to help are:

  • Offer the first or last appointment of the day, so the surgery is not as busy and there is less wait time, so anxiety levels are lowered
  • Explain and demonstrate each procedure before it happens, using simple, clear language
  • Count down procedures: "10 seconds then we are finished"
  • Reduce the amount of medical equipment or noise in the surgery.
Let us know what you are doing during the week by tagging us on social media. You can find us @thebda on Twitter, @thebritishdentalassociation on Facebook, and @britishdentalassociation on Instagram. Use the hashtag #LDWeek2022


Northern Ireland: Changes to Level II claims from 7 July

Amendments have been made to the use of Item 30 in the Statement of Dental Remuneration (SDR). Item 30 allows dentists to claim fees for the use of Level II Personal Protective Equipment in the provision of Aerosol Generating Procedures.

In line with changes to the Infection Prevention Control (IPC) guidance in Northern Ireland, claims can only be made if and when Aerosol Generating Procedures (APG) are used when a patient has a known or suspected respiratory pathogen, and when an unacceptable risk of transmission remains following the Hierarchy of Controls risk assessment.

Guidance has been issued on what details need to be included on the patient record, observations and use of Level II PPE with no associated APG item of service.

The changes will be implemented from 7 July 2022.


England: Developing the Booking and Referral Standard

The Booking and Referral Standard (BaRS) is a system to enable bookings and referral information to be sent between NHS service providers. The BaRS ensures healthcare professionals receive the information needed for patient care, in a useful format that is integrated into existing healthcare IT systems.

The service will enable the efficient sharing of information between NHS 111 and urgent dental care services. The BaRS will eventually be available in all healthcare settings, improving the patient journey and saving time for healthcare workers.

NHS England would like to speak to members of the dental profession about the new system to ensure it supports the needs of you and your patients. If you would like to share your ideas and feedback, or have any questions, please email the NHS Bookings and Referrals team.

Monday 20 June 2022


BDA Library: Opening hours 

The BDA library at 64 Wimpole St in London is open to visitors from 10.00 to 16.00 every Wednesday and Thursday. 

You will need to make an appointment if you wish to spend some time researching, but otherwise we would be happy to see you whenever you wish to drop by. If you would like to contact us about visiting, email or ring 020 7563 4545.

You can also access our eBook library from home and we continue to provide our usual postal loans service, although books may take longer to reach you at present.