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For the first time ever, Dr David Penn will head up an “All-Star” management team line-up and will work with a select few practices to develop a fully-blown business plan to help take you from where you are to where you want to be. Following the release of the results of the second Practice Plan NHS Confidence Monitor, a group of key opinion leaders met to explore the results in greater depth.
Getting the event underway, Les Jones, marketing director of Practice Plan, shared the results of the latest Confidence Monitor – an independently verified survey commissioned by Practice Plan to monitor the profession’s confidence levels in NHS dentistry – with the panel, which consisted of Eddie Crouch, Sarah Franks, Judith Husband, Andrew Lockhart-Mirams and Brian Westbury.
Les revealed that the survey indicated that a staggering 95% of dental professionals (NHS providers and performers) working within the NHS who responded to the most recent NHS Confidence Monitor have stated that they are less confident in the future of NHS dentistry than they were 12 months ago. The NHS Confidence Monitor also revealed that dentists are very worried about their own future, with 90% of respondents saying they are less confident about their career prospects within NHS dentistry going forward than they were a year ago. Confidence levels have dropped dramatically in terms of dentists’ ability to offer their patients the right balance of treatment versus prevention in times to come under the NHS, with 85% of respondents expressing fears that the balance won’t be right. Ninety-four per cent of respondents said they had lost confidence that practising dentistry within the NHS will offer an appropriate level of remuneration in the future, serving as a worrying statistic for the Government, since this is suggestive of staffing shortages in times ahead if dental professionals choose to leave NHS practice.
It also seems that there is little confidence that dental teams will be able to work effectively within the NHS framework as time progresses, with 89% feeling less confident on this matter than they did in the previous 12 months. Perception of patient satisfaction is also at a worrying low, with over three-quarters (77%) of respondents lacking confidence that patients will be happy with the outcome of attending an NHS dental practice in the future, when compared to 12 months ago. Brian Westbury is an experienced general dental practitioner who has worked in both the NHS and private sectors. Picking up on the survey’s elements that he considered to be related to the Government’s NHS contract proposals, Brian Westbury said: ‘People either haven’t listened to what the Government has said or don’t believe it.
Responding, Eddie Crouch stated: ‘Managing patients through step-by-step prevention is, of course, the spin of what the Government is proposing.
Eddie continued: ‘But what the Government is not happy about is that delivering that quality of care results in a drop in access. Les then asked the panel what they thought may have influenced the stark reduction in confidence levels in a relatively short amount of time. He said: ‘You’ve got a government with a mandate to stay for the next five years and a chancellor who, within days of being elected, stood up in Parliament and said public sector pay will be frozen at 1% for another five years. Eddie went on to clarify that all NHS dentists are being affected by the level of remuneration, stating: ‘It’s not the providers maintaining their income with performers dipping. The next topic discussed was what the panel considered to be the Government’s criteria for success.
Judith Husband is a clinical dentist working in secure setting dental care, such as Bullingdon Community Prison.
Addressing the issue of quality further, Sarah said: ‘I think the Friends and Family Test is all about perception, not whether the treatment provided is actually of a high quality.
Andrew Lockhart-Mirams co-founded Lockharts Solicitors in 1995 after 15 years of primary care regulatory and contract work at another highly respected healthcare firm. Leading on to a fuller conversation about access, Andrew presented figures stating that almost 40% of the population had not seen an NHS dentist in a two-year period*. Judith then shared her own experience of access, stating: ‘We’ve had these discussions in Oxfordshire an awful lot because we’ve never been able to hit the national targets of improvements and traditionally it has been a very heavily private area.
Les then asked what the workforce risks were for the Government, to which Judith replied: ‘As long as we’re in Europe I think we’re okay.
Andrew brought the discussion to the issue of the profession’s level of insecurity, stating: ‘There’s massive uncertainty. Picking up on the potential effect of the changes on young dentists, Eddie said: ‘For young dentists, unless there is radical change, it will be too expensive to work as a dentist. Sarah Franks is a newly qualified dentist and is undertaking dental core training at Birmingham Dental Hospital, as well as serving as a member of the Junior Advisory Board at Wesleyan Assurance Society.

Judith added: ‘Patients do like their own dentists but, unfortunately, new dentists don’t have a patient base. Judith added: ‘Now is probably the time for dentists to consider alternatives and diversification within the profession. Wrapping up the discussion, Andrew stated: ‘I think dentists are right to be apprehensive about the future.
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Online Lead Generation Services: we also offer Search Engine Marketing services to drive more qualified leads to your dental website! Even before we were open for business, we had a great website and marketing and most importantly —PATIENTS calling weeks before we were open to schedule appointments. A highly successful medical device representative that we know jokingly refers to one of his first jobs in college as being a supermarket “samples lady.” And for physicians, hospitals and healthcare marketing professionals there’s a gem of an idea among the free samples and trials. Once or twice a week our friend would pack up a folding table, white apron and other paraphernalia, and setup shop dispensing introductory free samples—usually a new food product—to supermarket shoppers.
It’s a marketing and product merchandising idea that’s been popular for at least a couple hundred years, if no longer. Stewart GandolfChief Executive Officer and Co-Founder at Healthcare Success StrategiesStewart Gandolf, MBA, is CEO of Healthcare Success, a medical marketing and health care advertising agency.
He is now a senior dento-legal advisor at Dental Protection, dealing with UK and international cases.
But the prevention-focused, staged approach does seem a more logical way of moving through treatment and you would have thought that a really professional approach like that would appeal to the profession. If it was true – that they were giving the profession the opportunity to offer the best care for their patients by going through a staged process via care pathways and various other things – then the changes that they’re making in the prototypes would not be happening.
And the only thing politicians are particularly bothered about is having mailbags full of people moaning about not being able to get an NHS dentist.
Both Judith Husband and Sarah Franks considered that it may simply have been a case of a different pool of responding individuals; however, Eddie felt differently. Eddie felt it was access and no more spend, and Andrew voiced his opinion that it was about access over provision of quality. If whatever they’re measuring isn’t up to standard they’ll just take off that 10% that’s allocated for quality. For more than 20 years, he acted for the General Practitioners Committee of the BMA on a wide range of regulatory and contractual issues affecting GPs, including the new GMS contract in 2004. However, Eddie pointed out that the population had increased by 2.9 million since 2008 so, even though treatment percentage has remained much the same, in reality hundreds of thousands of extra people have been seen by NHS dentists. But while we’ve had at least ?1 million wiped off the budget annually the population has gone up, as has access.
A significant sector of the market is corporate and as long as they can get a good supply of workers there’s no threat of a lack of staff.

They’ve got patient satisfaction in the Friends and Family Test, they’ve got Care Quality Commission inspections that are pretty good for most dental practices, and they’ve got access at 2.9% more than it was. With the debt you have as a new graduate, would you go into dentistry in the hope that you might earn enough at some point to pay off your debts and meet ever-increasing costs for, for example, indemnification? She was previously president of the Birmingham University Dental Students Society 2011-12 and 2012-13.
So they will be working in access centres, for the corporates, where patients will see someone different every time.
I think how we pay the dental profession and the changing needs of the population must to be looked at.
Responsive design reformats the dental website depending on the size of the screen the user is utilizing to view the dental website.
He came highly recommended from a number of my dental colleagues in not only the greater Atlanta area, but from out of state as well.
He discovered that more products left the shelf when he also included a friendly smile and a little bit of engaging conversation about the goodness of the product. For the consumer, the “purchase barriers” are lowered or removed with an introductory free sample. Many times a free exam is not an option, but there are other ways to bring a low-risk, low-cost or free “sample” to the prospective patient. We’ve been publishing ideas and stocking a free reference library of “how-to” information for years.
He has a wide knowledge of the regulations of both the NHS and the GDC, most especially for disciplinary procedures. In 2005, he was given an award at the Annual LMC Conference Dinner in recognition of 21 years’ service to GPs in the UK. As the new chief dental officer has taken on board, if we’ve only got funding for two-thirds of the population we’re never going to give a universal service to 100% of the individuals. Sarah was an active member of the organising committee for the European Dental Student Association conference held in Birmingham in 2013. They’re working in the highest risk areas for complaints and referrals to the GDC and they are worried, and quite rightly so. We’ll put together a comprehensive custom Web development strategy and Web marketing plan to achieve your goals. Judith has a wide experience of healthcare reforms, liaising with significant stakeholders and keeping up to date with changes throughout healthcare, in particular NHS dentistry. In 2011, Andrew’s name was entered on the BDA’s Roll of Distinction for Outstanding Services to UK Dentistry, the only solicitor to have received this award. The problem is that they’ve got a profession that even in their own surveys is shown to be getting more and more demoralised. Until the public gets behind NHS dentistry, which they’re not, I think it’s a pretty gloomy prospect. Consider what you have to offer such as a consultation, speech, ebook, community presentation, newsletter or screening.
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