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‘Lack of NHS dentists in Rutland’

More than half of Rutlanders are unable to get an NHS dental appointment, according to a survey.

A Healthwatch Rutland poll in autumn 2023 questioned 123 people, across a range of ages, about their experience of access to NHS dentistry.

Tracey Allan-Jones, Healthwatch Rutland manager said: “There were some positive comments but the majority were negative. ‘I can’t afford to go private’ and ‘I just cannot get an appointment with the only NHS dentist here, even for an emergency’ were typical of the feedback received.”

Photo: iStock
Photo: iStock

She went on to add: “While we eagerly await the promised national dental care recovery plan, public feedback demonstrates that change is urgently needed now. Many people cannot afford private dentistry and are in pain and distress.

“We need a clear plan for improving local access to affordable routine and urgent dentalcare. We continue to press for improvements in NHS dentistry across Rutland.”

The poll of 123 people represents 0.3% of the 41,000 people living in Rutland.

Photo: iStock
Photo: iStock

Healthwatch Rutland is the public’s NHS health and social care champion. The organisation wants to hear the experiences of anyone who uses GPs and hospitals, dentists, pharmacies, care homes or other NHS support services in the county.

As an independent statutory body, Healthwatch Rutland has the power to make sure NHS leaders and other decision-makers listen to feedback, and can then improve standards of care.

For more information people can visit www.healthwatchrutland.co.uk/contact-us or call 01572 720381.

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