Sixteen MPs from across England have co-signed the letter.
‘Unless the system is appropriately funded and commissioned,’ Ms Qureshi says in her letter.
‘The problems facing patients in constituencies like ours will soon be shared by patients in every corner of England.
‘In order to ensure that everyone has access to decent dental care, it is vital that we recognise and address this impending crisis in NHS dentistry.’
The #NHS needs to be properly funded to ensure equal access for all. Our letter to @MattHancock on the current crisis in dental care calls on him to urgently address this – too many people are already suffering. pic.twitter.com/zCPZw6050g
— Yasmin Qureshi (@YasminQureshiMP) February 8, 2019
The British Dental Association (BDA) has welcomed the letter, urging Mr Hancock to act on the access problems in England.
‘MPs from across England have sent the Health Secretary a vital message,’ BDA chair of General Dental Practice, Henrik Overgaard-Nielsen, said.
‘Now he needs to explain why on his watch dental patients in pain are unable to secure the care they need.
‘The public value choice between NHS and private dentistry.
‘But thanks to underfunding and a failed contract, over a million new patients across England have been left with no choice at all.
‘This government can’t keep pretending that access problems will be solved with warm words.
‘The Health Secretary has a duty to ensure that all who rely on NHS services can access them.’
Steve Brine MP recently said patient charge revenue makes up 28.7% of Government expenditure on NHS dental services.
In an open question to the Treasury, the Secretary for Health and Social Care gave the following NHS dentistry details:
|Gross expenditure (millions)2||£2,812|
|Patient charge revenue (millions)2||£807|
|Net expenditure (millions)||£2,004|
|Mid-year population estimate (millions)1||55.6|
|Net expenditure per capita||£36.04|
|Patient charge revenue as a percentage of expenditure on total NHS dental services||28.7%|
‘Dental charges remain an important contribution to the overall costs of dental services,’ a spokesperson for the Department of Health and Social Care said when the last increases were announced.
‘This increase will ensure that there is no shortfall in the costs paid by service users and those met by the NHS through the contributions of taxpayers.
‘We constantly strive for good patient access, and access to dental services continues to increase.
‘From January 2015 to December 2017, 22.1 million adults were seen by a dentist.
‘And almost seven million children were seen by a dentist between 2016 to 2017.’