Shropshire dental services to benefit from £2 million NHS cash boost

By Charlotte Callear | Health | Published:

Dental services in Staffordshire will benefit from a cash injection of more than £2 million.

NHS England in the North Midlands have recently been awarded £2.251m to local NHS dental practices to increase NHS dental access for around 30,000 patients across Staffordshire and Shropshire.

A total of 39 NHS dental practices across all 11 local authority areas will benefit from this funding, which aims to increase NHS dental access for patients and in particular encourage a higher take-up of dental check-ups for children aged 0-2.

This activity forms part of a wider national initiative which aims to increase access for this age group, promoting earlier prevention.

It comes as statistics reveal that by the time a child is five-years-old, a quarter will have tooth decay with on average three to four affected.

With dental disease now being the most common reason for hospital admissions for children aged 5-9 years old, the NHS is working to address these issues, both locally and nationally.

Rebecca Woods, Head of Primary Care for NHS England in Staffordshire and Shropshire said: “This investment in dental services is really positive news for patients of Staffordshire and Shropshire and we are working closely with our Local Dental Network which includes dental providers across the local NHS, local authority, Public Health England’s Consultant in Dental Public Health and NHS England commissioners to improve local dental services and promote earlier prevention at local level.”

Sara Hurley, Chief Dental Officer for England, said: “We are currently seeing a cavity crisis in pre-school children which is leading to entirely avoidable tooth extractions. Regular visits to your dentist from a very early age is key to developing habits that lead to a lifetime of good oral health. We are providing additional support to dentists to help them see more infants so that these painful and distressing interventions can be reduced.

"Latest data show over 140 children per day, some just one year old, are having decayed teeth removed.

"These statistics are now being tackled head on with a newly launched awareness programme supporting dentists across England to see more children from a young age and infants by the age of one.”

Charlotte Callear

By Charlotte Callear

Reporter based at the Express & Star's Wolverhampton head office


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