NHS Choices: Fact or fiction?
Tuesday 6th September 2016, posted in Dental News
Shocking research conducted by the consumer group Which? has revealed major issues for patients trying to gain access to NHS dentistry. Their research reveals that up to one third (31%) of surgeries that claim to offer NHS appointments actually do not!
Undercover Which? researchers called 500 random dental surgeries across the UK who were advertising NHS appointments on the Governments official website, NHS Choices. After calling, 31% of the surgeries didn’t have availability and 29% couldn’t make an appointment within two weeks. In one particular case, researchers who said they were suffering from toothache were told to wait eight to nine months for an appointment! This is obviously far removed from how NHS appointments are meant to work. Which? Executive Director Richard Lloyd said: "We found it frustratingly difficult to get an appointment with a dentist, as information about availability doesn't reflect reality.”
As well as the lengthy waiting times, some surgeries required patients to fill out lengthy forms and even asked for non-refundable deposits. Neither of these practices is advised or permitted under Government legislation.
NHS appointments with Oasis Dental Care
This report obviously raised major questions on how access to NHS dentistry is provided. At Oasis Dental Care we are doing our very best to provide honest, accessible and quality dentistry to as many patients as possible. Here’s how:
Extended opening hours
We have recently introduced extended opening hours as standard across all of our clinics. We understand the difficulty of fitting in a visit to the dentist with a hectic schedule. Our early morning, late evening and weekend hours make it easier for you to get the care you need.
Oasis Basics is our way of bringing quality and affordable dentistry to the UK. When NHS dentistry is not an option, Oasis Basics bridges the gap and provides access to affordable quality care with dental check-ups from just £27.00.
Oasis Dental Care is committed to transparency at every level of dental care. We do not use ‘from’ and ‘to’ or ‘min’ and ‘max’ prices at Oasis. Instead our practices published a clear fixed pricing structure for each treatment, which patients can access in their practice through pricing leaflets, on the individual practice websites and our online booking function makes it easier than ever before to book an appointment.
Moving dentistry forward
Oasis Dental Care is committed to improving access to quality clinical dental care throughout the UK, with the patient at the heart of all we do.
We continue to work with government and the NHS to increase access to density in the UK, and have recently been selected to run five of the new NHS prototype pilot schemes, which look to actively improve access.
In addition, we continually review feedback from our patients and adapt our policies to ensure that we continue to deliver a clear, honest dental service.