Letter: A disaster for dentists and a pain for their patients

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The Independent Online
Sir: The dispute between the Government and the dental profession highlights yet another threat to the NHS. Dentists are expected to do a health check in about four minutes, a filling in seven minutes and a crown in 30.

To put even more pressure on these times by imposing a 7 per cent cut in the fee scale forces the profession to make a difficult choice. Either we have to make a stand and state that we cannot maintain the quality of care that is the right of our patients and 'opt out' into offering a private scheme, or we accept the changes, with the long-term consequences of pressure on standards, new equipment and on pay for our dental nurses and technicians.

This is a sad state of affairs for the future of dental health of this nation. If the Government does not see sense, we can foresee a return to the bad old days when loss of teeth and full dentures were the norm and children suffered the trauma of multiple extractions.

Yours faithfully,

IAN ROBERTSON

Walsall, West Midlands

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