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Updates from week commencing 28 February 2022

Read all the updates that took place throughout this week.

Friday 4 March 2022


Advice: one-to-one advice available for Extra and Expert members 

Did you know, if you're an Extra or Expert member you have access to unlimited one-to-one advice via phone or email from our team of experienced advisors?

With more than 70 years of advising dentists, our advisors are experts in the laws, contracts, and regulations of dentistry. If you're facing complex issues, we will pair you with an advisor who will handle your advice on a one-to-one basis. 

Expert membership also gives you and your team all the policies, templates, and checklists you need to manage a safe, efficient and compliant practice.

For more information on one-to-one advice, contact our Practice support team on 020 7563 4574 or email:

Not a member? Join today.


England: Update on NHS system reform

NHS system reform is a complicated process. We have been pressing for change to the NHS contract in England for more than 15 years, so it was welcome news when the Government committed to meaningful reform last year. 

In his latest blog Shawn Charlwood, Chair of the British Dental Association's General Dental Practice Committee, gives an insight into these reform discussions. 

These negotiations are, by their nature, confidential, but here Shawn gives as much insight as possible into the process so far and outlines how we think our messages are getting through. 


BDA by-elections 2022: Do you want to represent your profession?


Nominations are now open for the 2022 BDA by-elections. We're looking for members to come forward to represent their colleagues across a whole range of BDA committees. You can find the full list of available seats on our elections page.


These committees help determine BDA policy and are key to making sure the voice of the profession is heard by governments and administrations across the four countries of the UK.


If you are interested in influencing positive change for dentists and dentistry, we encourage you to nominate yourself for the relevant seat. Nominations close midday Monday 14 March.

Thursday 3 March 2022



Wales: Additional information on GDS contract 2022-23


This evening the Welsh Government has circulated information about the options available to Welsh dental practices in 2022-23.  


We've outlined how practices can either opt for a new volumetric contract, or the UDA-only option for 2022-23.


This letter clarifies some issues regarding the contract options and includes a worked example of a contract variation from 2022-23 and a breakdown of metrics involved.




Making the case on pay and conditions

In the face of rising inflation, we've asked the DDRB to recommend an uplift of dental inflation plus 3% for GDPs and RPI plus 3% for employed dentists.

We've also asked for: 

  • Timely implementation of pay awards – uplifts now routinely take place 12 months late in Northern Ireland and at least six months late elsewhere, this is completely unacceptable
  • Separate recommendations on expenses – the DDRB currently only makes a recommendation on GDPs pay, and not on the expenses element of the contract value
  • Reinstatement of commitment payments for England, Wales and Northern Ireland 
  • An increase in the prior approval limit in Northern Ireland 
  • That the historical recommendation of pay parity of clinical academics is maintained
  • The pay award to apply to dentists' overall incomes, not just part of their pay, to ensure the uplifts are implemented in full.

These aren't nice-to-haves. This action is essential to ensuring that NHS dentistry across the UK can recover from the pandemic and go on to provide essential healthcare across the UK.

Read: Peter Crooks, Making the case on pay and conditions 


Scotland: NHS dentistry at risk as Government forces through support plans 

We have warned that dental practices will continue to face grave uncertainty, as the Scottish Government moved to impose an interim funding model for the service without meaningful negotiation. 

We welcome the introduction of a 'multiplier' to be applied to dental fees. However, dentists have significant concerns that the planned 3-month review will have serious implications for patient care and will leave practices unable to plan. 

We remain steadfastly opposed to the return to the unworkable high volume/low margin model of care that operated pre-COVID, and have urged the Government to apply the multiplier until new contractual arrangements are in place. 


We have consistently argued that the Scottish Government needed to significantly increase the current inadequate fees for extractions and denture repairs. Increased lab fees mean that dentists often provide these treatments at a loss, and the treatments are particularly prevalent in more deprived areas so any reduction in provision may further widen oral health inequalities.


Wales: GDS contract offer 2022-23

In his latest blog Russell Gidney, Chair of the BDA's Welsh General Dental Practice Committee, gives us an overview of the choices available to NHS dentists in Wales for 2022-23.

Practices can either opt for a new volumetric contract, or the UDA-only option for 2022-23. For support in making this decision and to find out more about what this means for you read:


England: Lords press for stronger primary care voice

We are keeping up the pressure for a stronger voice for dentistry in new structures set to be created by the Health and Care Bill as it continues its journey through Parliament. 

Working jointly with four sister organisations representing GPs, community pharmacy, optical, and audiology services, we're lobbying for primary care professionals to have a voice in the newly created Integrated Care Boards, which will have responsibility for commissioning dental services.


Following our extensive briefing, the issue has now been debated extensively in the House of Lords

Wednesday 2 March 2022


England: Free flu jabs for dentists axed

We have criticised NHS England's decision to exclude dentists and their teams within the NHS free flu vaccine programme this year. We have consistently pressed for this to be made a permanent arrangement, especially now COVID and flu are circulating together. Instead, dentists have once again been excluded.  


Reflecting on this decision, BDA Chair Eddie Crouch has said: "For a fleeting moment it seemed like dentists were finally being treated as part of the NHS family. Sadly the plan to 'Live with COVID' amounts to withdrawing needed protection for our teams and our patients in the years ahead.  


"We were told inclusion in this programme was important for both individual and public health. Absolutely nothing has changed in that regard.   


"In a bid to save pennies officials are sending a dreadful message to tens of thousands of frontline healthcare workers, and the millions of patients they treat."  


England: Revoking mandatory vaccinations 

The Government are bringing forward regulations to revoke mandatory vaccinations as a condition of employment for healthcare workers in England. These will come into force on 15 March

This change will also apply to dentists and staff visiting CQC-regulated care homes, who will not be required to show proof of vaccination from 15 March. 

This decision comes after a consultation on ending mandatory vaccinations and a review of the latest scientific evidence. We have consistently stated that vaccination should be encouraged rather than mandated and supported the removal of the vaccination requirement in our response to the consultation.

Tuesday 1 March 2022


BDJ: How does menopause affect the dental workforce?


The British Dental Journal shines a light on significant failings in care for women experiencing the menopause in the workplace. Within dentistry, not only are 76.9% of the dental team women, but 35% of dental care professionals (DCPs) and 43% of dentists are currently within the age range that can be affected by menopause – a large proportion of the dental workforce.


Our survey found a strong pattern of highly experienced women leaving general practice partnerships, ending their positions as clinical leaders and directors, and leaving medicine early because they were struggling to cope with menopause symptoms with no support from management or peers. 


The BDJ article covers how we can support members of the dental team going through the menopause, including reasonable adjustments to the workplace environment and creating an open and transparent space for discussions. 


Northern Ireland: 2021/22 pay uplift confirmed

The Department of Health has confirmed a 2.78% pay uplift (3% net) for 2021/22. The DDRB recommendations have been accepted in full, with the uplift to be backdated to 1 April 21.

We await receipt of the draft uplifted Statement of Dental Remuneration (SDR) for review, after which a new SDR will be published.


Northern Ireland: New Community Dentists Committee chair

The Northern Ireland Community Dentists Committee (NI CDC) has elected Ann McAreavey as chair for 2022-2025. Through the NI CDC, she hopes to be able to influence improvements in the provision of services across NI for some of the most vulnerable patients.

"I will strive to continue Grainne's excellent work in the coming years, to make sure the interests of community dentists in Northern Ireland are heard. I look forward to working closely with the Committee and the BDA team."

John Finnerty was elected vice-chair and the new representative for community dentists to the NIDPC will be Kelly Kerr.

Monday 28 February 2022


Library: 50 hours of verifiable CPD with our eBook quizzes

Members can now earn up to 50 hours of CPD through our eBooks CPD quizzes.

Our collection of eBooks cover a broad range of dental subjects, encouraging wider thinking and keeping knowledge current. Popular titles include, Cawson's Essentials of oral pathology and oral medicine, Paediatric dentistry, Pickard's Guide to minimally invasive operative dentistry, Infection control in primary dental care and more.

Five new titles have recently been added to the collection:

  • Fixed orthodontic appliances: a practical guide [BDJ Clinician's Guide]
  • Periodontology (4th edition) [BDJ Clinician's Guide]
  • Textbook of oral cancer - prevention, diagnosis and management
  • Risk assessment in oral health - a concise guide for clinical application
  • Practical procedures in the management of tooth wear.

Each title is provided with 20 multiple choice questions worth 2 hours CPD, allowing you to earn up to 50 hours CPD on completion.


England: NHS dentistry £50m funding boost myth buster

Many of you have sent in questions around eligibility for the extra £50million in funding announced by NHS England in January to provide additional urgent care for NHS patients.

We've raised your questions with NHS England and they've put together this myth buster and general Q&As to address some of your questions. 

This funding is only available until the end of March 2022 and cannot be accrued into the 2022/2023 contract year. We hope this Q&A clears up any confusion and encourages anybody eligible to take this important opportunity on behalf of their patients.



British Dental Conference and Dentistry Show 2022

After two years, the British Dental Conference and Dentistry Show (BDCDS) is back! It returns on 13 - 14 May 2022 at NEC, Birmingham. 

With 200+ world-class speakers, 400+ industry leading exhibitors, and 250 hours of enhanced CPD, there's something for the whole dental team. 

Secure a free pass for yourself and your colleagues now.