05 January 2021
We have received confirmation from Sara Hurley, CDO – England, that dental services in England are to remain open during the lockdown announced on 4th January.
The Government guidance on the national lockdown states: “The majority of public services will continue and you will be able to leave home to visit them. These include the NHS and medical services like GPs and dentists”. We also understand that dental services remain in operation across the devolved administrations.
Dental services should be carried out in line with the current standard operating procedure (SOPs), with remote consultation, triage and risk assessment remaining key prior to patient attendance for face to face dental care. Social distancing measures remain in place and PPE levels as stated for low, medium and high risk assessed patients remain.
Furthermore, the CDO reinforced the fact that dental professionals are defined by the Government as critical workers.
We understand that following the announcement last night that, in an open letter to Health Secretary Matt Hancock, the BDA has urged the government to abandon the most recent NHS England activity targets that it believes, “will be impossible to achieve under the new national lockdown, and which risk putting hundreds of practices out of business”.