Survey asks dentists about contract reform, the GDC and mental health

A year before the new NHS contract is rolled out, a survey is being launched to ask dentists for their thoughts.

The Dentistry Confidence Monitor survey will ask about both NHS and private dentists’ knowledge about the contract, which will be introduced from April 2020, how well they feel it will work for different groups and how it may impact profitability, workload and goodwill.

There will also be questions around the GDC including the profession’s confidence in the regulator’s ability to handle complaints appropriately and its effectiveness in protecting the public.

Respondents will also be asked about wider challenges, such as recruitment and mental health.

The Dentistry Confidence Monitor is launched today, on 1 April by Practice Plan and can be filled in here:

Changing direction

It is the seventh time the survey has been run.

Previously, it was known as the NHS Confidence Monitor but the new name reflects the way it has evolved and grown.

Last year’s survey focused on happiness levels within private and NHS dentistry, and confidence in the future of the profession.

This new survey takes a wider view of the dental market and issues affecting those working in the NHS and private sectors.

Joe Hendron, owner of a former prototype practice, said: ‘We have a Health Secretary who claims that he has prevention at the forefront of his plans for the future of the NHS.

‘However, he is pinning his hopes on a new dental contract which maintains targets based on activity.

‘Government investment in dentistry is diminishing year on year making it more challenging to have a career in the NHS, yet policy makers do not acknowledge the impending crisis in recruitment.

The electorate of whichever persuasion expect to have an NHS which is fit for purpose when they need it.

‘It is incumbent on the dental profession to make their voices heard, however possible, to try to bring about change – change for our colleagues and for our patients.

‘I urge you to participate in this survey and put your weight behind the door of change.’

Nigel Jones, sales and marketing director of Practice Plan, said: ‘Last year, almost 500 dentists and associates from across NHS and private dentistry told us how they were feeling about working in the profession and their thoughts on the future of their career and NHS dentistry.

‘From their answers there was a clear sense of what matters to dentists working today and we have used their feedback to create a survey that really zooms in on these issues.

‘Dentists sharing their experiences and opinions on these topics not only provides another level of insight into the state of dentistry today, but can also add to the weight of evidence that will help to drive positive change in the profession.’

To view the results of previous surveys, visit:

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