Government figures mask participation

The Scottish Government’s announcement of ‘record breaking’ increases in dental registration rates masks a long-term decline in patient participation, according to the British Dental Association in Scotland.

02 August, 2016 / infocus

Statistics published by ISD recently showed that 91 per cent of the population is registered with a dentist, up from 89 per cent in 2015 and 52 per cent up from 2007. However, the BDA points out that only 72 per cent of the 4.8 million people currently registered (as of March 2016) have seen an NHS dentist in the last two years.

The association argues that participation rates have been in steady decline since changes to registration rules in 2007. At this point, 99 per cent of the 2.5 million registered patients had contact with their dentist.

It also says that, while the figures show there is no difference in registration rates between children living in the most and least deprived areas, rates of participation continue to vary sharply between communities.

Robert Donald, chair of the BDA’s Scottish Dental Practice Committee, said: “These record-breaking registration rates mask a long-term decline in participation among patients. The reality is while many people in deprived communities are getting on the books, they are not making it to the dentist’s chair.

“We know Scotland has a lot to be proud of when it comes to fighting decay, particularly the big gains we’ve seen through ChildSmile. Now we need real effort from government to ensure adults are seeking the regular care that   they need.

“Lifetime registration is good for generating positive statistics, but that means very little if the patients in most need are not seeking treatment. Boosting attendance among adults would do wonders for Scotland’s oral health, particularly on oral cancer where early detection is key.”

Related Post

Biggest ever BDA election launched The BDA has launched the largest election in the association's recent history, with 285 places up for election, including 28 in Scotland. The elect...
BDA joins forces with The Dentistry Show The BDA is joining forces with The Dentistry Show to launch a brand new dental conference and exhibition in May 2018. The new event will see the BD...
Modest fees uplift doesn’t go far enough Scottish dentists have welcomed the modest uplift on item of service fees for 2017/18, but remain concerned that they remain the lowest paid in the UK...

Tags: BDA / ChildSmile / Dental registration

Categories: Magazine / News

Comments are closed here.