Karachi dentist joins Hartlepool practice

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A dentist from Karachi has joined a Hartlepool dental practice to gain crucial experience before taking on full-time NHS work.

Michelle Safavi has joined the team at Hartlepool Dental and Implant Centres. Dentists who qualify outside of the UK are required to complete a year of working in a chosen practice in a position known as Performers List Validation by Experience. The new dentist will be working alongside Dr Caroline Jackson at the practice’s three surgeries. Dr Jackson will act as Michelle’s mentor during the programme.

PLVE positions are highly sought-after, and it is estimated that there are currently more than 900 graduates waiting for a place to become available. Practices do not receive funding for taking on trainees, and some charge up to £24,000. Dr Jackson has agreed to take Michelle on at no cost and the team is happy to provide the experience and training free of charge to her. 

Michelle arrived in the UK before Christmas and spent the festive period in Hartlepool. Although Michelle lives in Pakistan, her mother is from Nuneaton, so she knows a lot about UK culture and has fitted in seamlessly. Living by the marina, Michelle said that she is keen to add sailing to her list of hobbies, and added that everyone at the practice and in the town in general has been very friendly and welcoming.

There is a dire shortage of dentists in the area, and this is one of the reasons why Dr Jackson was keen to offer Michelle the opportunity.

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