As part of my remit on the Young Dentists Committee, I attend the BDA's Central Committee for Hospital Dental Services, to find out what is happening in the hospital dentist sphere and to voice young dentists' concerns.
One of the key items on the agenda were the issues with government implementation of the pay review body's (DDRB) pay uplifts, which were:
- Trainees 2%
- Specialty Doctors and Associate Specialists 3.5%
- Consultants 2%
In England the pay uplifts were in fact:
- Trainees 2%
- Specialty Doctors and Associate Specialists 3%
- Consultants 1.5%
Unfortunately, the Department of Health refused to backdate these awards to April 2018 and instead started them from October 2018 which, of course, means that they are only actually worth a half of their stated value.
In Scotland there was an uplift of three per cent for those earning up to £80,000 and increases for those earning more than £80,000 were capped at £1,600.
The Welsh Government said it has accepted the recommendations, but we still await the uplift whilst the lack of a functioning government in Northern Ireland Hospitals dentists in Northern Ireland are still left in limbo in the absence of either functioning government or a working public sector pay policy.
Working with the BMA and the GDC
We also discussed the current relationship between the BDA and the BMA and the pros and cons of working together, and how to get the voice of hospital dentists heard.
The Committee are also discussing with the GDC the current ways onto the specialist lists and whether the GDC could adopt a similar process to the GMC's CESR (Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration) that would allow dentists entry to the specialist lists on the basis of the work, training and education they have undertook.
Guardians of safe working hour
One of the main strands of the new '2016' trainee contract is the 'Guardian of safe working hours' role, and this was discussed, with it seeming that a lot of trainees weren't aware of the role in their hospital.
For those that aren't aware of the Guardian I would suggest contacting your hospitals Local Negotiating Committee to find out how to ensure you are protected.
Want to know more?
As your representatives, we continue to fight for better pay, terms and conditions and ensure good career paths for dentists working the hospital dental service.
If you'd like to know more, or are interested in getting involved with our committees, please get in touch.
I encourage everyone to come along to the Hospital Dentists Study Day on Wednesday 6 February in London, it's free and a great opportunity keep your knowledge up to date (CPD!), and meet like-minded dentists.
Amaar Hassan, YDC member
Improving working lives for hospital dentists
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