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General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and dentistry

The General Data Protection Regulation 2018 (GDPR) aims to make organisations more accountable in the way they collect, store and use data, and how decisions are made, as well as ensuring transparency. We focus on how GDPR affects dentistry and dentists

How does GDPR affect dentists?

Many high-street dentists and dental practices are actually in a good position to deal with the requirements of the GDPR, as dentistry has been a heavily regulated profession and many practice owners already follow stringent data protection procedures and have robust policies in place.

However, there are some strengthened and new layers of compliance that will be required and you need to ensure that you have all the right structures and systems in place before the 25 May 2018, to ensure your dental practice will be complying when the new regulation takes effect. 

GDPR will affect dentists working in all four of the UK countries – if you are not complying you could be liable for a hefty fine.


What do you need to do?

We know there are significant steps high street dentists (both practice owners and associates) will need to take to ensure compliance with GDPR and our advice for members outlines the key areas:


What is the BDA doing?

We are campaigning for amendments to the Data Protection Bill, which is currently going through Parliament, to prevent huge and needless burdens being placed on high-street providers.

Most of the requirements cannot be changed, as they are enshrined in EU law, but we are calling for a rethink on the some of the points that the UK Government has actually made stronger in the Data Protection Bill.

We're arguing that the Data Protection Bill actually goes beyond the GDPR requirements, and we don't believe dentists should need a Data Protection Officer (DPO) in place, as most dentists do not process healthcare data on a large scale, and we are arguing that dental patients are already well protected under current legislation. 

More information

BDA Extra and Expert members can contract to our team of business and legal advisers for help and support on compliance with the GDPR in dentistry, email

Working for you

We will continue to campaign for better regulation. If you'd like to be kept up to date with our progress:

  • Please ensure you membership details are up to date via MyBDA
  • Ensure you tick the box in MyBDA to subscribe to our regular e-newsletters. 
  • Follow our Twitter feed @theBDA

Through our policy and campaigning work, we ensure that the concerns of all sections of the profession are raised and that dentists' voices are heard at a national level: join us.