NHS dentists in the north east are being invited to a free event where a panel of their peers will discuss the implications of the new dental contract.
In just over a year, the new NHS England contract will begin being rolled out, and the panel will discuss what this means for the future of NHS practices and how they can prepare for the changes.
The ‘What Next for NHS Dentistry?’ event will be held on Wednesday 27 March from 6.15pm – 8.30pm at Durham County Cricket Club.
The panel includes principal dentist Onkar Dhanoya, who is also chair of North Tyne Local Dental Committee, president of the BDA’s Northern Counties branch and senior vice-dean of the FGDP(UK), and Shiv Pabary MBE, a member of the GDPC Executive, education associate for the GDC and local dental adviser to NHS England.
They will be joined by Louise Hunter, principal dentist and owner of a mixed practice, and Joe Hendron, the 2018 LDC Conference chairman and a practice owner who withdrew his practice from the prototype programme in an open letter to the then Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt.
A similar event was held in Solihull in January and attended by around 100 dentists, many of whom were able to ask questions directly to the panel.
One of those attendees was dentist Kuldip Gakhal.
He said: ‘The biggest concern is that no one knows what is going to happen.
‘I’ve been speaking to colleagues of mine about NHS and private dentistry, and it’s getting to the stage where, as practice owners, we’re having to juggle different balls to make sure we keep our options open.
‘Coming to events like this gives us a boost as there’s a lot of uncertainty in dentistry, but after listening to the panel we feel that we’re heading in the right direction.’
Attendees at the event will also hear from Nigel Jones, sales and marketing director of Practice Plan, who has organised the event, about the results of the latest NHS Confidence Monitor survey.
The survey asked almost 500 NHS and private dentists their thoughts on what it’s really like to work in the profession today.
Nigel said: ‘There is a little over a year to go until April 2020 when the new contract will begin being rolled out across England.
‘It is clear that many dentists in the NHS have a lot of questions around what this will mean for them and how they will be impacted.
‘Now is the time for those in the dental profession to make sure they have all the information they need to ensure they can prepare for the changes that are coming.
‘Our event is designed to help do just that by hearing from their peers and giving them the opportunity to ask any questions they have, so they can make the best decision for themselves, their business and their patients.’
To book your free place at the ‘What Next for NHS Dentistry?’ event, click here.