British Dental Association criticises ‘reckless’ budget cuts in Northern Ireland

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The chair of the British Dental Association in Northern Ireland, Rosyln McMullan, has criticised plans to cut £70 million worth of funding for health services.

Ms McMullan, chair of the Northern Ireland Council of the BDA, slammed proposals to cut health budgets and said that the move “smacks of recklessness” given that GP services are already under pressure and thousands of children are having dental treatment in hospital under general anaesthetic. Standards of oral health among children in Northern Ireland are the worst in the UK and the BDA has urged authorities “to stop seeking false economies.”

Trusts in Ireland have been instructed to make savings amounting to £70 million by the end of 2017 by the Department of Health in Stormont.

Trusts are aiming to make savings by reducing dependence on locum and agency staff, but it is also thought that the number of hospital beds could also be decreased. There are also concerns about the provision of domiciliary care.

A public consultation related to the proposals will now run over the next six weeks.

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