Changes to the NHS


NHS Orthodontics have changed very radically from April 2006.

All dentists need to be aware of this change because they may be "taking the flack" from patients whose children are denied treatment.

Orthodontists will not expect Dentists to "filter" out those children who will not be eligible. All children will be entitled to be assessed to see if they will qualify. The sensible thing to do is refer the children as before, but warn the parents that the rules for NHS Dentistry have changed and some children will not have severe enough problems to qualify for treatment. If they can be referred with an OPG type radiograph that will be appreciated and help speed the decision process.

Those patients who have a malocclusion that falls into the IOTN Groups 4 and 5 have a great need of treatment and we can discuss and fully explain the treatment needed to improver their appearance. The IOTN group 3 who have an Aesthetic Index of 6 or greater also qualify. This effectively means that if the front teeth look unsightly they can receive treatment.

All those children below this level in the Index will no longer get NHS treatment.

That doesn't meant that they cannot have treatment, but the treatment will have to be by private arrangement. We have developed a range of fees with various payment options that we can offer should the parents decide that they will still want treatment.

It is going to be an uneasy time for both parents and dentists. Please contact me should you have any queries.

So what malocclusion will definitely still get treatment?

In general we shall still be able to accept:-

  • Hypodontia problems with prosthetic replacement implications.
  • Impacted, partially erupted and ectopic teeth.
  • Overjets of more than 6mm.
  • Large reverse overjets.
  • Severe and moderately severely crowded arches.
  • Supernumary teeth
  • Traumatic bites
  • Large posterior cross-bites with significant jaw displacements on closure.

I hope to be able to allocate some space each day in the appointment book so that these patients can be seen quickly and efficiently.

© 2009 copyright Dr Mark Lynch : All Rights Reserved