Latest NHS dentistry update

26 April 2021
1 min read

The OCDO has published its latest NHS dentistry and oral health update, including news on SNOMED CT, the NHS regional clinical fellows programme and a message from Sara Hurley.

Ms Hurley’s update reads:

Dear colleague,

The response to the covid pandemic has highlighted that dental professionals have a wealth of experience to give to the NHS, not just in the traditional dental setting. It has also further ensured that profession’s insight and advocacy for the patient is valued around the decision-making table. We want to nurture and develop this talent. So, I am pleased to announce that the NHS regional clinical fellows scheme is open to GDC registrants and I encourage members of the profession with an interest in becoming the leaders of the future to apply before the deadline on May 4.

Health Education England is also conducting a survey on the national dental workforce exploring any factors which they may have encountered over their practicing lifetime which may have influenced their careers. This is to help future workforce planning and support career opportunities, so if you're a dentist please do fill it in. 

The Department of Health and Social Care has announced that free PPE is to be extended until March next year and that the SNOMED CT deadline has been extended to August 31, 2021. On PPE, this brings a welcome and deserved degree of certainty to practice owners. And the extension to SNOMED CT gives us time to get the implementation of this important new system right. But let me be clear, I do not support endless extensions. At some point we need to take the jump and embrace it – SNOMED CT is a system that is essential to speed up referrals for oral cancer and enable dental practices to receive crucial information on issues such as child safeguarding. 

Many in our profession have paid tribute to His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh. The Duke was made president of honour of the British Dental Association in 1980, marking the association's centenary. I know I speak for the profession when I say that we are truly grateful for his support over the years.

Further updates in the bulletin include more details on the reporting of lateral flow test results, overseas healthcare workers visa extensions, regulatory reform, the extension of temporary approval to suspend the need for signatures on dental forms, and more.

View the full bulletin here.