NHS access rise in Hull
More than 13,000 new NHS dentist places are being made available over the next year to patients across East Yorkshire.
The news follows an investment of nearly £1m by Hull Teaching Primary Care Trust (PCT) into NHS dental services.
John Hinchliffe, adviser in dental public health for the trust, said he expects high demand for the places within Hull and East Riding, and that patients will be able to call a dedicated hotline to secure places.
He told the Hull Daily Mail: ‘There has always been a flow between Hull and the East Riding.
‘It is still not easy finding an NHS dentist, but the situation is improving and will continue to improve. The reason we are in this situation is because demand is so high.
‘It has been historically difficult to draw in dentists to Hull, but now dentists who want to set up practices have to go where the trusts with the money are.’
Dr Duncan Ross, director of commissioning and procurement at East Riding of Yorkshire PCT, said: ‘East Riding PCT has made good progress toward widening provision in recent months.
‘Since the new national dental contract was introduced in April 2005, the PCT has set up contracts for NHS dental care with dental practices in Beverley, Driffield and Hessle creating provision for about 13,500 additional patients.
‘The number of individuals on waiting in the East Riding has also steadily decreased. We are aware of the difficulties in accessing NHS dental services, which is a national problem, and we will continue our efforts to attract new dentists to the area.’