NHS Dentistry Watch: Do It Yourself Extraction

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The United Kingdon’s socialized National Health Service gets the Dental Moron of the Day award. has An unpleasant tooth.

A desperate grandfather tore a rotten tooth out of his own mouth with a pair of pliers after failing to get an appointment at his dental surgery.

Peter Atkinson was in so much agony he drank half a bottle of whisky to numb the pain before wrenching out the molar in his garden shed.
The 62-year-old businessman had tried repeatedly to get an appointment at his dentist with no luck … and when he asked for the emergency dentist’s number he was told it would not be given out until the surgery closed.
But he says his toothache was intolerable. He could not take the pain and in desperation dug out his toolbox. Today he criticised the chronic shortage of NHS dental appointments.
He said: “I was in a lot of pain and couldn’t eat, so I rang up my local dentist. He is a good guy, but he is snowed under and said I would have to wait until September 20 to be seen. I couldn’t manage with paracetamols.
“When I rang again the receptionist and she said she couldn’t do anything for me and that I would have to wait. I was in agony and told my wife Barbara I couldn’t cope with it. She was horrified when I told her my intentions. She begged me not to tear it out and said she would ring the emergency dentist.”
But the couple, who live on Lavender Way, Preesall, were told the staff were not allowed to give out the emergency dentist’s number until they had closed, because it is an out-of-hours service.
Peter, who runs a toy shop in Knott End, said: “I drank half a bottle of whisky and went down to my shed. I felt no pain at all and it barely bled. The tooth had worn away so much it was like a shark’s tooth.”

What a bureaucratic nightmare.

Couldn’t the local dentist make room for an emergency appointment or was it that the patient was on the National Health Service (NHS) and he would be paid whether he sees him or not or paid less?

There seem to be a good number of these type of horror stories about the NHS coming out of Britain lately.

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University Pays Dental Students to Stay Away: Redux

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The Evening Telegraph has Dental school crisis: Kerr to intervene, Health Minister Andy Kerr today pledged his urgent intervention in the over-subscription crisis at Dundee University’s dental school.

Visiting Angus, Mr Kerr said he would be speaking to the country’s chief dental officer, Ray Watkins, who yesterday met with the dean of the university’s School of Dentistry to discuss the problem which has led to would-be students being offered £2000 to delay the start of their dental course for a year.

The situation has arisen after a surge in demand for dental school places led to a rise in applications for the soon to start academic year of 40%, and a course acceptance jump of 30%.

Following the city meeting, Mr Watkins said he would be reporting his findings to Deputy Health Minister Lewis Macdonald, and Mr Kerr said today he too would be looking at the issue, but not solely in the context of the immediate-term Dundee debacle.

“We need to reflect on the conversations we had yesterday and I will be speaking to the chief dental officer,” said Mr Kerr.

“The key issue is what to do about the over-subscription, but this is not just about university places.

“These are complicated things and we need to work through all the implications, as well as the funding issues,” added Mr Kerr.

“It is in our interests that we have dentistry students trained here in Scotland but let us work it through and we will deal with the situation.

“We don’t want to go into this not knowing the consequences, and that’s why I want to respond properly once I have gone through this.

“I will be dealing with it as a matter of urgency of course, but we need to look at the whole situation,” Mr Kerr said.

Flap previously had University Pays Dental Students to Stay Away.

No real solutions here.

The health bureaucrats have agreed to talk.

How about some privitization? Or Educational Vouchers so that these students could be accomodated at other schools in the U.K.?

Nahhhh……this solution is too simple.

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University Pays Dental Students to Stay Away

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The Scotsman has University pays dental students to stay away as funds crisis grows.

A SCOTTISH university is paying dental students £2,000 to delay their training, despite the country’s chronic shortage of NHS dentists.

The action by Dundee University – one of only two dental training centres in Scotland – has prompted a political row, with opposition politicians accusing the government of prolonging a crisis in NHS dentistry.

I know some dental students can be a real pain, but this is ridiculous.

The university has offered 120 school leavers places on its five-year dentistry degree course, but has authorised funding for only 67 first-years.

To avoid being financially penalised for taking on too many students, the dental school is offering the cash incentive to students who are willing to delay taking up their studies for a year.

Earlier this year, the Scottish Executive announced plans to recruit or train an additional 200 dentists by 2008. But the government, through the University Funding Council, has only provided enough cash to take on an additional 16 students at the Glasgow and Dundee dentistry schools this year.

When you get the government involved in central planning for what a free market will do naturally you get dislocations.

Another example of how socialized dental healthcare delivery systems are not good for dentists, dental students or patients.

H/T Baltimore Tales

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Politician Calls Out a Dentist Over NHS failures

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Rhona Brankin really got her teeth into the election campaign this week.

Rhona Brankin accused the dentist of staging “a political stunt”

Here is an interesting story from the U.K. where a minister calls out a dentist for a Political Stunt. What did the dentist do? He limited his practice to non-National Health Service (NHS) patients or as they call it across the pond – went private.

The story goes on:

She’s the deputy health minister who launched an astonishing attack on a dentist in Stranraer.

Rhona Brankin accused the dentist of staging “a political stunt”

She didn’t actually bite Kenneth Barr but she stood up in parliament and said his behaviour was “appalling”.

His decision to go private – and leave 3,000 patients without an NHS dentist – was “a political stunt”, she said.

Mr Barr says he has been defamed and is consulting his lawyer.

All he’s doing, he said, is giving patients the time necessary for quality treatment.

“There’s been a steady erosion of funding in NHS dental services over the years,” he told BBC Scotland.

We’ve become used to the SNP using question time to drop yet another embarrassing statistic on the first minister’s head

“We are no longer able to maintain and indeed advance our high quality of service.”

He is taking on 1,000 private patients and will continue only to treat children and special needs cases on the NHS.

Ms Brankin was furious and said: “It’s not good enough for dentists to be able to train at the expense of the public purse, to build up an NHS list, to build up the trust and confidence of patients in Stranraer and then walk away.”

The Scottish National Party’s Roseanna Cunningham – convener of the health committee – was able to make the point that Mr Barr was doing what many dentists have been doing all over Scotland, because the fees paid by the NHS are too low.

Only 3% of Scotland’s 3,700 dentists are expecting to increase their NHS work.

Ms Brankin told MSPs that dentists should stay loyal to the NHS. The executive is investing an extra £150m over the next three years in dental services.

There will be 200 more dentists trained, grants of up to £20,000 to help dentists set up in rural areas and “the biggest tooth brushing education programme in Europe”.

Wow, they are doing a tooth brushing education programme! How about some dietary counseling and an anti-smoking campaign? How about some privitization of your miserable healthcare system?

Will these socialists ever get a clue?

Now, they resort to name calling.