Richmond dental patients forced to travel to Teesside for NHS care

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Dental patients who are searching for NHS services in Richmond and the surrounding area are being forced to travel to Teesside, it has been revealed.

There are currently no dental practices in the Richmond area offering free places for NHS adult patients, meaning that those who wish to join an NHS register are facing lengthy journeys to Teesside or other parts of Yorkshire.

According to the NHS Choices website, patients based in Richmond are faced with a choice of practices in Ripon, Yarm and Stockton, as no local surgeries have NHS adult places available. Research also suggests that there are no practices in Richmond offering emergency NHS dental treatment for patients who aren’t currently registered with a local dentist.

Helen Grant, county councillor, said that she was worried about the shortage of dentists, especially given that there are hundreds of new houses being built in the area. She pointed out that there are children who haven’t had a dental check in over two years and people who are being forced to pay for private dental care because they can’t get an appointment with an NHS dentist.

Local MP for Richmond, Rishi Sunak, claimed that a small number of constituents had been in touch regarding dental provision and the comments have been passed on to health ministers.

Director of commissioning operations for NHS England in Yorkshire and the Humber, Moira Dumma, said that the trust was reviewing how access could be improved and working on ways to create new places and increase capacity.

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