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Volume 404: debated on Monday 28 April 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much dentists are paid for each type of procedure they carry out; what plans he has to change the level of charges; and which categories of people are exempt from NHS dentist charges.[109207]

For dentists in the general dental service, the fees are set out in the Statement of Dental Remuneration (SDR). This is available in the Library and on the Department of Health'swebsite at The patient charges are also shown; for most treatments, the patient charge is 80 per cent, of the dentist fee, subject to a maximum charge. The maximum charge for dental treatment or appliance provided on or from 1 April 2003 is £372.The fees contained in the Statement of Dental Remuneration are regularly updated, basedon the recommendations of the Doctors' and Dentists' Review Body (DDRB). Final fees for2003–04 will be set when the DDRB has completed its current review and the Government has considered its recommendations. Patient charges based on the new fee rates will apply from the date of publication of the new SDR.People in the following groups are exempt from dental charges:

  • Aged under 18
  • Aged under 19 in full time education
  • Expectant mothers
  • Women who have had a baby in the last 12 months

In addition, the following groups have their dental charges remitted:

  • Those receiving income support, and their partners Holders of an NHS low income scheme HC2 certificate
  • Holders of an NHS low income scheme HC3 certificate (partially remitted only)
  • Those receiving job seekers allowance, and their partners
  • Those receiving child tax credit, and their partners
  • Those receiving working tax credit, and their partners