Accessing dental services in Camden

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Summary of report content

This is a report published by Healthwatch Camden, June, 2017. The report looks at local dentistry experiences and covers a wide range of opinion from homeless people, BAME groups to locals. It meant over 116 people were engaged with, the exact total is not given. A set of detailed recommendations as well as response is in the report. Summary of recommendations: Recommendation 1 Dentists should review their current procedures for informing patients about treatment charges to make sure these not only meet NHS guidance and standards but work well enough to fully support their patients. Recommendation 2 Dentists should provide training for receptionists and other members of the practice team about clear and consistent communication of treatment charges Recommendation 3 Dentists must display NHS charges and, where applicable, private charges in the surgery in a format that is clear to everyone. Recommendation 4 Dentists must ensure that each patient understands the NHS price bands and where and why they may have to pay private charges e.g. if the service is not clinically necessary, before they see a dentist. Recommendation 5 Dentists should give each patient a written treatment plan which outlines both NHS and any private charges and options where these are available and ensure the patient is given time to agree to treatment before it commences. Recommendation 6 Dentists must ensure patients with disabilities receive appropriate communication support in line with the Accessible Information Standard and ensure physical access needs are met. Recommendation 7 Dentists should provide key information about charges in popular local languages such as Bengali and Somali. Recommendation 8 Dentist practices should review their customer relations policies and training to ensure the service welcomes all clients equally and treats everyone with dignity and respect. Recommendation 9 Dentists across Camden should work together to build trust in dental services by engaging with community groups and representatives to demystify dentistry procedures and charging. Recommendation 10 NHS England should review the allocation of Units of Dental Activity(which are used to fund NHS dental treatments) to ensure that the total available to Camden dentists is sufficient to meet the need for prevention as well as treatment and that NHS patients do not have to wait more than two weeks for an appointment. Recommendation 11 -The Health and Wellbeing Board should develop an oral health strategywhich aims to: encourage a preventive approach to dental health and raise awareness of the serious health implications of poor dental health -Develop culturally sensitive oral health promotion programmes for BME and other marginalisedcommunities targeted at children and mothers, to improve oral health knowledge and support behaviour change -Improve knowledge of dental service charges and which dental services are available on the NHS -And which is produced inline with NICEpublic health guideline [PH55]on oral health for local authorities and partners.

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General details

Report title 
Accessing dental services in Camden
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Camden
Date of publication 
Monday, 26 June, 2017
Date evidence capture began 
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
Date evidence capture finished 
Friday, 31 March, 2017
Type of report 
Key themes 
Cost of services
Quality of care
Quality of treatment
Service delivery organisation and staffing
Staff attitudes
Staff levels
Staff training
Other information of note about this report 
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
Focus group
Unstructured Interview
How was the information collected? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Primary care services 
Dentist (non-hospital)

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Other population characteristics 
Homeless people
People who misuse drugs
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Does the information include other people's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Yes action has been taken or promised
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
What type of impact was determined? 
Implied Impact

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.