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People in England have to wait three years to see NHS dentist, watchdog warns | UK News

People are told to wait three years for dentist appointments, according to a report from Healthwatch England.

Others are removed from their practice lists for not making an appointment earlier, the watchdog said.

Dental surgeries have reported having “thousands” of people on waiting lists, while some patients cannot access care despite having contacted several for appointments, with some being asked to wait until 2024 for one.

Healthwatch England reviewed the experiences of 1,375 people and found that some people were told to wait three years for an NHS dentist appointment, but were told private care could be available within a week .

He said some people were offered private care as an alternative in the same dental office, with some “prioritizing” private care and patients saying they felt “obligated” to use it.

About 61% thought the treatment was too expensive.

While some people have access to free dental care – including children, pregnant women and those on income support – many have to pay rates ranging from £ 23.80 for routine treatment to £ 282.80 for more complex care.

The watchdog warned some people were avoiding treatment because they could not afford to pay for private care.

He said the delays had caused some patients’ pain symptoms to worsen – and in one case, a patient needed hospital treatment after taking too many painkillers.

The report, seen by the PA News Agency, highlights a number of issues, including repeated appointment cancellations – even halfway through treatment, and patients have to wait six weeks for care. emergency.

Some who called NHS 111 for emergency dental treatment were told to “use salt water,” according to the report, while others were told to use DIY filling kits in the meantime an appointment.

The watchdog also warned that more and more people were being prescribed antibiotics with no prospect of follow-up …

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This notice was published: 2021-05-24 07:15:00