Broken Compass

compass

Jeff Sherer comments on the timing of implementing the Compass system

Dentists wouldn’t get away with treating patients how they are treated by the NHS, Jeff Sherer says.

Normally on the 31 of March I allow myself to sit contently with the UDA chase over for another season.

This year, unfortunately, I spent the afternoon counting UDAs on an excel spreadsheet, using a crazy formula and sequence of steps that was provided to me by the NHSBSA to work them out.

All this because the new ‘Compass’, was incapable of telling me how many UDAs had actually be achieved.

With nine practices, you can imagine how monotonous and time-consuming this process was.

I still don’t know the exact number of UDAs that have been achieved!

Administrative tools

I have always been firmly against corporal punishment, but whoever made the executive decision to introduce Compass some seven weeks before the end of the contract, made me re-question my beliefs.

Why on Earth the new system could not have waited until June when the year-end had been fully calculated is beyond me, and I imagine most dentists.

Do we not have a hard enough job to do without the goalposts being constantly moved?

I also received an email recently reminding me to update my entry on the NHS IG toolkit as it is due before the end of the month, with the stark warning that the CQC would be informed in April of those practices that had not submitted it.

There’s no pressure then, I will just change my name badge from dentist to Caldicott guardian as soon as I have prepared the Friends and Family Test results for tomorrow.

When did we stop being dentists and start becoming administrative tools for NHS statistics?

Friends and Family Test

The Friends and Family Test, in my opinion, is a complete joke.

The system is so flawed that you can actually submit results for your competitors practice up the road and likewise them for you.

Another example of a poorly implemented NHS administration process.

As you can probably tell, I am not a fan of the new ‘Compass’ at the moment.

Surely the development team should have foreseen a number of these problems.

When I officially complained to the NHSBSA regarding specific problems, they send me a generic email thanking me for my feedback (while not addressing the points in my complaint).

My biggest issue in all of this is that as health professionals we would never treat our patients like this.

We have a duty to make sure their treatment plans are clear, ensure they are fully involved in them, and deal with any complaints.

What we receive as dentists is far from the standards we are expected to provide.

3 Comments

  1. 1

    Today I have had an NHS patient claim deleted and rejected at the same time. This simply should not be possible so I waste my valuable time chasing an administrator who does not know the answer…..they will upgarde the query and will let me know in 3 days tops…now that wouldnt be good enough for an NHS patient in pain would it?

    • 2

      This is exactly the issue that we are all facing. One standard we receive from NHS administrators (poor) and another standard expected from us to provide (excellent).

  2. 3

    I have long been if the opinion ,… That the GDC, with its remit of protecting the public’s interest and wellbeing with respect to the deliverance of dental care should , as its primary task …
    Encourage all dentist not to enter into a contract of service provision that places them in a position undue stress …. As , human beings exposed to undue stress , will eventually make in appropriate decisions and judgements in their professional capacity …
    I.e. The GDC should encourage all dentist to opt out of NHS contracts …

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