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News / February 25, 2011

Urgent action needed on RQIA information gap

by Guy Hiscott

Dentists in Northern Ireland are being left in the dark about forthcoming compulsory registration with the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA), the BDA has warned.
Registration of dental practices with RQIA will commence from 1 April 2011, yet the regulatory body has failed to provide any written communication directly to practices, detailing the process and requirements of registration, or the timeline for registering.
The BDA is urgently calling on the Authority to issue information to dentists now, to ensure they can prepare for registration.
Peter Crooks, chair of the Northern Ireland Dental Practice Committee, said: ‘RQIA expects dentists to comply with unpublished deadlines, without providing guidance on the key information dentists need to know.
‘Far more must be done by RQIA to communicate with the dental profession to enable dental practices to understand the requirements of the legislation, and how to demonstrate compliance.
‘The additional administration necessary to meet this new and costly regulatory burden will involve time away from treating patients. For this reason, practices need to be given adequate notice to enable them to prioritise patient care and comply with the requirements.’