New figures show salary decrease for dentists in England, Wales and Northern Ireland

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New figures from NHS Digital have revealed a decrease in salary for dentists in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Statistics show that dentists’ earnings in England and Wales have fallen by 0.7% to an average annual income of £68,700. In Northern Ireland, dentists have experienced a much greater drop in earnings, with average salaries decreasing by 4.3%, bringing the yearly income for a self-employed dentist to £66,400. Scotland was the only nation to report an increase. Salaries rose by 0.1% to £67,800.

A spokesperson for the NHS said that the number of NHS dentists is rising all the time, and added that the main priority was to ensure that patients were able to access first-rate dental services, but neglected to discuss pay.

The British Dental Association claims that dentists have experienced a real-term decrease of around 35% in the last few years, which has been made all the more difficult to take given that dental charges have increased in England year on year for the last five years.

BDA chair, Henrik Overgaard-Nielsen, accused the government of failing to fund the NHS dental service appropriately and to deliver “meaningful reform.” The BDA has urged health minister, Matt Hancock, to deliver on his promise to put preventative dental care at the heart of new policies as the NHS celebrates its 70th birthday.

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