Having already had the luxury of expressing my opinions about the recent GDC’s (General Dental Council’s) episode, I don’t want to rehearse all of that here. So I will reserve my comments to matters of the style and timing rather than the substance.
To me, what is even more astonishing than the fact of the GDC’s proposed rise in the ARF (annual retention fee) is the timeframe it has set for its confirmation. In view of the size of the hike, it would have been prudent to assume that there may have been something of an uproar to the proposal. In light of that, one might have expected the regulator to give itself what looked like a respectable period of time to digest the feedback from registrants before forging ahead with its proposals. But according to its own published timetable, the GDC will close the consultation early in September and then make final decisions about the change about a fortnight later. Readers may wish to draw their own conclusions about the haste of this process.
In similar fashion, a proposal of such significant impact was always likely to generate fairly close examination of its reasoning and the background data upon which it is based. And so one might have expected that the proposal would be supported with a complete set of papers with the ‘workings’ clearly laid out. Instead, the information provided is partial (however you want to interpret that word) and the reasoning somewhat obscure. This is true to such an extent that anyone wanting to informedly comment on the consultation will be obliged to seek more information and clarification. Presenting that information before being asked would again have lent the process a greater level of credibility.
So with a short timeframe and an even shorter amount of information, the dental profession is being asked to comment on matters of monumental significance.
My question is whether such practise can be regarded as fit?
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