NHS dentistry in Lancashire consultation

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Purpose The main objectives of the consultation were to find out perceptions of:
* how easy it is to register with an NHS dentist;
* why people aren't registered with a dentist;
* what problems they experienced when trying to register with an NHS dentist; and
* if the NHS dental contract has improved dental services.
Subject Dental services
Commissioned by Overview and Scrutiny
Geographic area All of Lancashire
Method Questionnaire - online
Consultation with General public
Date 01/05/2007 - 29/06/2007
Undertaken by Corporate Research and Intelligence Team, Policy Unit


Number of responses 70
Key findings Overall respondents felt that it was very difficult to get an NHS dentist regardless of whether they had a dentist or not. The reasons people gave for being registered privately or not having a dentist at all was because they hadn't been able to get an NHS dentist. The general feeling was that the lack of NHS dental places was caused by dentists transferring to private schemes meaning that there are no NHS dentists or places locally. Even when people did manage to get an NHS place they had to contact a number of different practices before they succeeded.

When asked about the NHS dental contract people felt that it hadn't had any effect on the service, and some people even felt that it had got worse.

A problem caused by the lack of NHS dentists seems to be the increased workload on dentists who do NHS treatment. The overall feeling was that NHS dental services needed to be improved, particularly as people aren't going to the dentist at all because of the cost and are suffering health problems as a result. They also wanted the registration process to be improved and simplified, the waiting times to be reduced, more promotion of places available with NHS dentists and to make sure the information on websites is up-to-date.
Outcomes The county council is still in the process of gathering information about NHS dental services and oral health in Lancashire. Over the next few months, overview and scrutiny will be looking at all the information - from the public and health professionals.

Project document(s)


Contact information

For more information about this research contact:

Rebecca Robinson
01772 537787

Mick Edwardson
01772 530290

Email: haveyoursay@lancashire.gov.uk