On 7 February 2024, NHS England and the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) published a joint plan to recover and reform NHS dentistry.
The plan announces a range of public health initiatives to improve the oral health of children and recommits to the workforce growth and development outlined in the NHS Long Term Workforce Plan.
It is an important next step in improving patient access to NHS dental care and supporting dental services to return to pre-pandemic levels of activity.
We welcome the increase in undergraduate dentist training places. Training places will be expanded initially by 24 per cent to 1,000 places by 2028 to 2029. With further expansion by 40 per cent from current levels to over 1,100 places by 2031 to 2032, making access to NHS care faster and fairer for patients.
The plan sets out a national programme of actions for the recovery and reform of NHS dentistry services in England.
It aims to:
- prevent poor oral health
- boost access and activity
- support and develop the whole dental workforce.