NHS England launches consultation over the future of emergency dental services in the West Midlands

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NHS England has launched a consultation over the future of emergency dental provision in the West Midlands.

Health chiefs are planning to modify the existing services, and have asked for patients and members of the public to provide feedback and share ideas and opinions. Under new proposals, the trust is planning to cut the number of urgent dental care sites from 13 to 8 over bank holidays and weekends. The remaining eight sites would increase their opening hours. 

There are also plans to decrease the number of sites operating on weekday evenings from 8 to 5 clinics. Two sites in Warwickshire (Bedworth and Stratford-upon-Avon) and one in Solihull would close. A new clinic would open in Coventry, which would operate on weekends, weekday evenings, and bank holidays. The Coventry site would serve Warwickshire, but some patients have raised concerns about travel time, with an expected journey time of up to an hour. 

A spokesperson for NHS England and NHS Improvement Midlands, said that the proposals were not final, and that the trust was seeking ideas and feedback from people who have used the service in the past or would use the service if they needed urgent treatment. The existing structure was established many years ago, and the needs of the population have changed, which is why NHS England is keen to explore other options and make changes to improve the service.

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