A leading dentist has welcomed a move by the General Dental Council (GDC) to tackle issues that add to stress of registrants under its investigation.
Kevin Lewis, dental director for Dental Protection, applauded the regulator's decision to address the problems regarding hearings.
Amongst the information shared at a stakeholders meeting (24 May) was the GDC’s declared intention to address the long delay before a hearing can proceed, the length of time a hearing can last and the large number of individual allegations brought against a registrant.
Kevin Lewis said: 'Dental Protection Limited (DPL) is a member of The Medical Protection Society Limited (MPS) group of companies, which is the world’s leading professional indemnity organisation for doctors, dentists and other healthcare professionals; as such it is in the best position to understand the needs of members who are investigated by a national regulatory body.
'It is for this reason that our organisation provides all members with access to a confidential counselling service if the need should arise during a regulatory or legal challenge whilst practising their chosen profession.
'More dental members have been investigated by the General Dental Council in the last two years than at any time in our 120 years of experience. Clearly, to reduce the stress to members of the dental team it is desirable to ensure proportionality in the numbers of clinicians being investigated and the length of time it takes for an investigation to be completed.
'Meanwhile, dental members who find themselves at the centre of a professional challenge are encouraged to explore the benefits of counselling with the dento-legal adviser managing their case. There is no additional charge for this service which is provided as a benefit of membership.'