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Dental Services: Coronavirus

Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN 114788, tabled on 31 January 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the impact of short-notice dentist appointment cancellations as a result of covid-19 on the ability of dental practices to meet the 85 per cent UDA target and deliver additional dental capacity appointments.

Answered on

8 February 2022

The potential impact of COVID-19 cancellations was considered in setting the 85% threshold.

Dental practices are required to maintain a short notice cancellation list and to proactively contact patients to offer appointments as part of the arrangements for income protection during the COVID-19 pandemic. This seeks to allow available appointment slots to be filled more quickly, benefiting both patients and dental contractors.

An exceptions process remains in place and where practices have faced particular challenges in meeting the thresholds as a result of extenuating circumstances, they are encouraged to discuss these with their commissioners.