Summary of report content
Healthwatch Tower Hamlets report on their feedback on dentistry during the period March to December 2020. During this period they received 62 comments on this subject.
The feedback was largely negative, reflecting the pressure on dentistry services during the pandemic. patients with non-urgent needs struggle to be seen, and there were also some reports of patients struggling to get urgent appointments for acute dental issues. Those in need of routine procedures worried that their issues may become acute if left untreated for too long. Patients reported getting antibiotics or painkillers for their tooth infections, without follow-up dental treatment.
Some patients are not sure whether they can access dental services at all; or feel reluctant to access them because of Covid-19 related worries. Many dentists stopped accepting new NHS patients. This means that unless they pay privately (which many cannot afford), many patients can only access emergency dental treatment via NHS 111 or the Barts Dental Clinic, with no follow-up.