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News / August 7, 2009

BDA Director defends dentists

by Guy Hiscott

Reacting to earnings and expenses statistics for dentists in Northern Ireland published earlier this week by the NHS Information Centre, BDA Northern Ireland Director Claudette Christie said: ‘The report recognises that dentistry operates in a unique context in Northern Ireland and that there are variations in pay. In Northern Ireland dentists are rewarded for the amount of work they do and the figures show that dentists are working very hard to care for their patients. Indeed, we know that in the last year alone they have provided more than 1.4 million fillings and cared for nearly 900,000 patients in the Health Service.

‘Dentists are highly trained, caring clinicians who work with the aim of improving the oral health of the population of Northern Ireland. The demand for dentistry in Northern Ireland continues to outstrip the supply and the inward recruitment of dentists here has proved difficult.

‘The report also recognises that dental practice is expensive and practices require constant investment. As with other small businesses, in dentistry it is the practice owner who is responsible for costs including the provision of suitable premises, equipment and staff. He or she is also responsible for complying with standards of good practice and regulatory requirements.’