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Win for common sense in NHS dental contract case

NHS England has been directed by NHS Resolution in a recent tribunal to apply its discretion during the year-end reconciliation process to ensure a fair and proportionate outcome.

The applicant and GDS Contract holder in question had fallen short of their annual UDA target by 30 UDAs using the most favourable of NHS England’s reconciliations methodologies for the contract year 2019-2020. Whilst NHS England had set out ways of calculating a fair practice UDA figure for March 2020, the most favourable way brought about mitigation of just one UDA.

The GDS Contract holder had asked NHS England to use its discretion given that they had patients booked during the practice closure and could show that the 30 UDAs would have been achieved had the practice not closed.

NHS England did not use their discretion to amend the reconciliation figure and the GDS Contract holder took the appeal to NHS Resolution.

NHS Resolution noted in a message to Local Area Teams that a “fair, sensible and proportionate approach should be taken, and one where the application of common sense should take precedence.” NHS England has been directed to look again at its decision and to exercise discretion to give an increased UDA total for the March UDAs. Additionally, NHS Resolution stated that the breach notice which had been served was not appropriate and should be reconsidered.

We are pleased with this decision coming from NHS Resolution and it tells NHS England to use its discretion to make sure that its policies do not cause unfair outcomes.

If you think your contract should have been reconciled differently last year to ensure a fair and common sense outcome from the reconciliation process then, like this GDS Contract holder, consider an appeal.

BDA Expert and Extra members can contact advisory services for help with their applications.

Call 020 7935 0875 or email [email protected].