Putting more dentists in community hospitals would be examined under any future Labour government.
Denton and Reddish MP and shadow health minister Andrew Gwynne said the move could make practices that are only marginally viable more secure.
Speaking in a backbench debate on community hospitals he said: ‘Community hospitals can provide a vital step between social care and acute care, and Labour would seek to develop them further. For example, it might be possible for GP or dentistry services to be offered in more community hospitals, which could make some which are only marginally viable at the moment more viable for the future. That possibility should be explored.’
He continued: ‘A future Labour Government would also aim to develop community services further within community hospitals. For example, as I have already suggested, it may be possible for more GP, dentistry or other services to be offered by them, and I think that that opportunity should be explored further.’
Mr Gwynne said the government's NHS reorganisation meant there was ‘real danger that the role of community hospitals could be overlooked’.
By Anika Bourley, parliamentary correspondent