Councillors call for new long-term dental providers to be based in deprived areas of Portsmouth

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Councillors in Portsmouth have called for new, long-term providers to be based in poorer areas of the city. NHS England is currently working to identify new contactors after dental chain, Colosseum Dental, pulled out of its NHS contract. 

NHS England has confirmed that three providers based in the city will take up temporary contracts to provide patients with dental care until a long-term alternative has been found. Bupa Dental Care, Perfect Smile and the University of Portsmouth’s Dental Academy will be treating NHS patients for the next 12 months. In the meantime, NHS England is searching for long-term contractors to take over from Colosseum Dental.

One of the main concerns for councillors is that Colosseum’s clinics were located in some of the city’s most deprived areas, and the health and wellbeing board is appealing for new services to be focused in these parts. Members insisted that applications should only be accepted from providers looking to operate in Paulsgrove and Portsea. 

Thousands of NHS patients were left without access to care after Colosseum Dental announced that it would no longer offer NHS services earlier this year. Although other providers have stepped in to try and plug gaps, there is still concern for the future, and councillors are hoping that NHS England will announce positive news in the coming weeks and months. Bupa Dental Care has already increased capacity at its practices in the city, and Perfect Smile will provide additional places in Cosham. Final arrangements are currently being made with the university to enable local patients to access services at its academy facility.

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