Hampshire councillor waits a year for dentist appointment and calls for urgent action to be taken to address industry crisis

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A COUNCILLOR has voiced his frustration after ready nearly a yr for an NHS dentist appointment.

Cllr Andy Tree, Hampshire County Council’s unbiased member for Whitehill, Bordon and Lindford, phoned for an appointment in autumn final yr.

To today, he’s nonetheless ready for his appointment – however after phoning up the identical apply and enquiring about personal appointments, realized he might be seen inside every week.

Cllr Tree fears that this bias in direction of seeing personal sufferers as a substitute of NHS ones may go away tons of of individuals throughout Hampshire with out the dental care they want.

He stated: ‘I’ve been on a ready checklist for an appointment for the reason that autumn – however once I final phoned up I used to be instructed I may get one inside just a few days if I went personal.

‘If individuals can’t see their dentists on the NHS, and can’t afford to go personal – as would be the case for a lot of in East Hampshire – their dental well being will deteriorate till it turns into a medical emergency.

READ MORE: Hampshire Chamber on the hunt for ‘more inclusive and diverse’ board

‘I’m wondering what motivation or encouragement dentists really obtain to see their NHS sufferers.’

In accordance with NHS England, dentists in Hampshire are presently working at a 95 per cent capability, having decreased their hours through the Covid-19 pandemic.

This has created a backlog, well being bosses say, however there is no such thing as a indication of when that ready checklist will likely be cleared.

Alison Cross from NHS England stated: ‘With out extra funding, it received’t be a degree taking part in subject.

‘There are a variety of practices throughout Hampshire and the Isle of Wight which can be underperforming, and we’re conscious of that.

‘However for the second we’re caught with what we’ve received.’

A latest report by the Affiliation of Dental Teams confirmed Portsmouth CCG has the seventh lowest variety of NHS dentists per 100,000 within the nation, at 42.

It additionally discovered Hampshire, Southampton and Isle of Wight CCG at fifteenth lowest, with 45 NHS Dentists per 100,000.

Labour MP for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, stated the £6.8m funding given to dentistry within the south east earlier this yr was ‘wholly inadequate’.

‘It’s clear to me from chatting with native dentistry representatives and practitioners that authorities funding allotted in January is wholly inadequate, quickly turning Portsmouth right into a dental desert,’ he stated.

‘Tory ministers have to cease sitting on their arms, have interaction with the challenges and urgently intervene to ship the NHS dentistry we deserve.’

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