Professor Paul Tipton

Dentist – International Lecturer – Mentor


The future of NHS dentistry



“My advice is to be proactive, get yourself skilled now and position yourself into private practice”


It seems that Jeremy Hunt and the government will be imposing the new contract on the junior doctors. You must assume that there will be no generous negotiations with our own NHS dentists over pay and conditions.

No confirmed ideas of the way that the new contract and dental conditions will go but the government is very good at leaking its ideas so that the population gets used to the idea before it happens.

Some of the ideas I have recently heard include capitation raising its head again and restricting what type of cases dentists can do under the NHS. The undergraduate dental training programme costs the government over £100k per year for 5 years. The therapist programme costs a fraction of that.

I’ve heard is that the undergraduate dental training programme will be cut to 3 years and will be based on the cheaper therapist programme. For those dentists who wish to do more advanced work such as Endo, crowns, veneers, Ortho etc the training cost will come from their own pocket.

Dentistry will be banded in terms of your post grad training and experience so that under the NHS you will only be allowed to do basic things without post grad training and qualifications.

It’s going to be a very different dental world out there.

Add onto that the decrease in the percentage that associates can expect to get from their principles, it’s being driven down by the corporates and don’t expect it to stop until it gets to 25-30%.

My advice is to be proactive, get yourself skilled now and position yourself into private practice. Develop your own website even if you are an associate and get yourself a portfolio of well photographed work so that you get that job in the private practice when it comes available because of your training and portfolio.


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