The SDA Summit
We are delighted to announce our first SDA event on Tuesday 16th of March from 12.00 – 2.30 on webinarjam. This webinar aims to inform and stimulate discussion around the promised changes to the post-pandemic SDR.
If you are a dental professional and you have questions or ideas then please get in touch and book the event here.
The Chief Dental Officer (CDO) has stated that he wishes to engage widely with the profession. This is a new dynamic and presents a unique opportunity for the majority of the dental profession to have a role in this process, rather than a select few as has previously been the case.
Critically, we must make our voices heard en masse, whether differing or united in our opinions, to help influence Scottish Government (SG) policy. The impact on the oral health of our patients, our working environment and the way that we are remunerated may then be significant.
Pre-COVID 19, the average Scottish GDP devoted three quarters of their time to NHS treatments. Many of us feel that the current SDR is outdated and denies high quality patient care. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought deep fractures into sharp focus but many of these are long standing issues. Currently, the NHS has both negative and positive impact on oral health as well as a deleterious effect on the mental health of our teams.
The SDA summit will include the following key tenets:
- Scottish Government policy on Oral Health and their long-term commitment to NHS dentistry.
- Scotland’s Dental Public Health requirements- how they have been and may now be met by the services we provide.
- A fair system of remuneration for dental professionals, with long term security of the Living Wage for all members of our team.
- Mitigation of legal and ethical regulations, in terms of how these impact on our patients and the morale of dental teams.
The SDA Summit features presentations from three prominent figures who can help direct the discussion on a new/updated system:
- The CDO of Scotland, Tom Ferris, will make a presentation on what he believes should be the values underpinning a future system of NHS GDS.
- Professor Phil Taylor, Dean of Dental Surgery at RCS Edinburgh, will present his thoughts on the various models which may be adopted and discuss their relative merits.
- Professor Cynthia Pine CBE, Professor of Dental Public Health at QMUL, will present her views on the requirements of modern NHS GDS in order that they meet public health needs.
This event should allow us to reflect on the work that we do and consider our commitments as NHS GDS providers. Following the summit, we intend to summarise the presentations and points raised. We would like to encourage colleagues who wish to take part in further discussions and polling, in order that we establish the common ground and limits of any proposals. We shall be arranging further events for those who wish to take an active role and work with the Scottish Government to develop a viable long-term model for NHS dental services.
The SDA was borne of the helplessness facing many of us in the initial COVID 19 lockdown period. We, a small group of Associate and Principal dentists, have been working over the past several months to create an Association and are now in the final stages of this process. We hope soon to invite a formal membership and our constitution is available to view on our website. We will in time establish a formal committee, with an appropriate level of engagement from GDPs. Those of us who are working to develop the SDA are doing so with the intention of creating a transparent, democratic and relevant body to represent all dental professionals. We wish to be inclusive and to work with all other representative groups.
The SDA summit will demonstrably offer the benefits of engagement and encourage you to be part of this process. A successful outcome ultimately depends on the engagement of as many of us as possible. Whilst there is much work to be done, we hope that this summit demonstrates progress. We would be delighted to hear from anyone who wishes to be involved with our vision of a brighter future for Scottish dentistry.