Dental school graduates fail to find work placements in Scotland

Dental school graduates in Scotland have failed to find training places, despite a government claim that there are more than enough, reports

More than 10% of students about to complete their final year at Dundee Dental School have been unable to find work placements needed to enable them to complete their training.

And a shortage of places could undermine efforts to boost the number of NHS dentists in the north and north-east.

This year 147 dental students are expected to graduate if they are successful in this week’s exams.

It was first thought there were only 135 vocational training places, but the government said there were actually 151, 135 in general practice and eight each in the hospital dental service and the ‘longitudinal service’, a combination of hospital and general practice.

A further 20 a year will be needed when the first students graduate in Aberdeen in 2013.

The Press and Journal has learned that seven graduates, one from Glasgow and six from Dundee, have yet to secure a training place, however.

NHS Education for Scotland (NES) received more than 200 applications, the remainder from dental schools elsewhere in the UK and Ireland.

NES said individual practices were responsible for appointments.

A spokeswoman said it expected to make more training places available in the near future.

A Scottish Government spokesman said 95% of Scottish applicants had obtained a post.

NES expects to have a small number of additional posts available soon and will conduct a further recruitment round after the final exam results are known.

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