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Updates from week commencing 16 January 2023

Read all the updates that took place throughout this week.

Friday 20 January 2023


Wales: Open letter addressing uncertain future

We have written an open letter to the Welsh Government spelling out our disappointment that the end-of-year reconciliation guidance has ignored our clear recommendations to secure the future of the profession.

The Chair of WGDPC Russell Gidney outlines in his blog the ongoing challenges of contract reform and the uncertainties that NHS dentistry faces. Our letter contains an honest appraisal of the government's guidance for General Dental Service (GDS) contract reform practices, commentary on the forthcoming 2023-2024 volumetrics and reflections on the future of contract reform.

We shall continue to support the contract reform process and provide advice on the reform's real-world impact. We are consulting with Local Dental Committee representatives and will be seeking your views on how to move ahead.


Mental wellbeing resource for dentists

In a high stress profession like dentistry, it's easy to develop chronic workplace stress. Especially in the past couple of years, as the industry has been facing tougher challenges, this has become a growing concern. 

Stress and anxiety can severely damage your mental health and impact your ability to provide appropriate care.

As resources providing preventative tools are still limited, Positive Psychologist and Dentist, Mahrukh Khwaja wrote Resilience and Well-being for Dental Professionals providing a guide to help combat burnout and nurture positive mental wellbeing.

This guide includes tools to help dental professionals take steps towards positive mental health through wellbeing exercises and creating habits to help balance your work and personal lives. 

Thursday 19 January 2023


Northern Ireland: Commemorating 100 years in JIDA collaboration

The Journal of The Irish Dental Association (JIDA) is planning several special features ahead of the centenary celebration of the BDA Northern Ireland Branch, and the Irish Dental Association (IDA). The features will honour the milestone by reflecting on the last 100 years of dentistry.

The December/January issue features content from Tristen Kelso, Director of BDA Northern Ireland. The information from Tristen about our work will replace the President’s message in all Northern Ireland issued copies. This edition focuses on our campaign for reform of NHS dentistry across the UK and the increase in late-stage diagnosis for head and neck cancer in NI.

We look forward to seeing the future editions of the JIDA and continuing to collaborate in celebration of such a huge milestone for both the BDA NI Branch, and the IDA.


Fixing the pay review process

Today, along with our colleagues at the British Medical Association, we're setting out how to fix a pay review process that is no longer fit for purpose.

In a new report, we've documented how Ministers have interfered in DDRB processes, imposed public sector pay freezes and pay caps while arbitrarily defining the NHS 'affordability' each year.

Last week, hours after the Department of Health and Social Care confirmed a delayed real terms cut for contract values for general dental practice in England, we made our case directly to Health Secretary Steve Barclay.

We will continue to push for meaningful reform as we believe that any dedicated health professional requires timely and fair pay uplifts.

Wednesday 18 January 2023


England: DBS checks for CQC providers

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has recently changed its criteria for providers and their DBS checks. Previously, to register with the CQC, potential providers used to have to secure a CQC countersigned DBS check from a list of post offices, which were often not near practices. In rural areas, round trips of over 100 miles were not unheard of.

Under the new criteria, if you are a registered healthcare professional you still need to have an enhanced DBS check with barring information to support your application. However, if you are registered with certain professional bodies (including the General Dental Council), you do not need to apply for a CQC-CE-DBS.

This means that you can use a normal umbrella body to secure a DBS check which is a welcome change for all members, especially those in rural areas.

Tuesday 17 January 2023


British Dental Conference and Dentistry Show 2023

The British Dental Conference & Dentistry Show (BDCDS) is returning on 12 – 13 May 2023 at NEC, Birmingham.

The UK's largest dental show will host 200+ world-class speakers, 400+ leading exhibitions and 150+ hours of enhanced CPD, ensuring material for everyone on your dental team.

Register now to get you and your team a free pass and gain access to one of the biggest events in dentistry.


Northern Ireland: Building connections in the profession

100 years after the formation of the Association's Northern Ireland Branch, Philip McLorinan is looking forward on being appointed the latest NI Branch President on 27 January.

After working for more than 20 years as a General Dental Practitioner, and part time undergraduate clinical tutor, it's no surprise that his CPD offering in the 2023 programme focuses on a wide range of face-to-face meetings and a range of educational and social events.

The profession has faced a challenging couple of years. However, through several social events open to members and non-members, the new 2023 branch programme aims to offer clinicians opportunities to connect, support each other, and build stronger relationships.

Monday 16 January 2023 


Northern Ireland: Supporting dentists' Mental Health and Stress

At this time of the year, when we might feel at our lowest, it's important to know which tools are available to help manage our mental wellbeing. Social enterprise, Inspire, provides the General Dental Services (GDS) Assistance Programme to support dental professionals.

As one of the largest mental health and wellbeing service providers Inspire have guidance on several subjects from finances to discrimination. This resource is available to all dentists working in GDS in Northern Ireland and offers access to six free counselling sessions on top of 24/7 telephone support and CBT self-help programmes.

Our members also have access to Health Assured services including counselling, bereavement support, CBT self-help courses and legal advice to support you with both personal and professional issues. Being aware if the tools available can be an important first step, however, if you ever feel overwhelmed please contact Lifeline on 0808 808 8000 for free 24/7 support in NI or the Samaritans on freephone 116 123.


Access support on "Blue Monday"

Blue Monday is the time of year when people commonly feel low. The festivities have just ended, the weather is cold, and the past year's struggles may still be weighing on you.

We aim to support you in every aspect of your life, and in partnership with Health Assured, offer members a comprehensive support service.

Regardless of your employment status this service is designed to help you through any personal or professional issues currently affecting your wellbeing, accessible 24/7, 365 days a year.


England: NHS Mental Wellbeing App to help you through "Blue Monday"

If you are struggling this January, we are here to support you. To help you cope and improve your mental wellbeing, all primary care dental teams can access the NHS Practitioner Health Wellbeing App.

This personalised mental wellbeing tool creates a wellbeing plan based on individual scores and customised content. It identifies your specific needs and directs you to the right tools, resources, and routes to support.

Dentists and their teams can register for the app using the code PC2022 and will receive joining details. 

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