Magazine article Public Finance

Architect of Dentistry Reforms Fears Effect of Cuts

Magazine article Public Finance

Architect of Dentistry Reforms Fears Effect of Cuts

Article excerpt

Reforms aimed at improving access to NHS dentists in England could be at risk of funding cuts despite their potential to save money in the long term, the architect of a major review has said.

Professor Jimmy Steele's 2009 review led the way for reforms to the profession, which were aimed at increasing access to NHS treatment and reducing the incentives for dentists to treat fewer patients by 2011.

But Steele warned that these reforms could be undermined by potential funding cuts. He said that politicians and primary care trusts had sometimes made the mistake of applying market economics to the issue.

'Good value is not more dentistry at a lower price,' he told Public Finance.

'If cuts are going to have to be made to dental services, there are a number of ways you can do it.'

These included decreasing the types of treatments provided or asking patients to pay higher charges for certain things, he said. …

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