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Health: Dentistry

Volume 712: debated on Monday 5 October 2009


Asked by

To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many dental appointments were missed by patients in each of the last five years; what is the estimated cost of them to the National Health Service in each of those years; and what steps they are taking to reduce the number of missed appointments. [HL5374]

Information is not collected centrally on numbers of missed National Health Service (NHS) dental appointments. When the new contractual arrangements were introduced in 2006, NHS Primary Care Commissioning published guidance on how dental practices can apply good practice in managing appointments so as to minimise the number of patients failing to attend.

More recent guidance has been aimed at patients to ensure they understand the importance of keeping their dental appointments and following clinical advice to maintain their oral health. Guide to NHS dental services in England has been placed in the Library and is also available on the department’s website at www.dh. This contains a section on patients’ responsibilities.