NHS England statistics show 80,000 patients were referred for dental care in April

Sample News Big

Statistics from NHS England show that over 80,000 patients were referred to urgent care hubs for treatment in April. 

Emergency dental centres have opened across the UK to provide urgent assistance for patients while high street practices are closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. These hubs have been set up to help those with facial injuries and symptoms such as severe pain, swelling and excessive bleeding. 

Figures from NHS England suggested a significant increase in NHS 111 calls from March, when most practices were up and running until the third or fourth week of the month. The number of calls was also 36% higher than the same time last year. 

The British Dental Association said that the influx of calls is a direct result of closing practices without having an urgent care system up and running. Across the UK, more than 600 hubs are now providing emergency care, but it took time to get them off the ground and the BDA believes that the impact of delays is now becoming apparent. The BDA has also accused the government of failing to support practices throughout the crisis, which may mean that several are lost. A survey conducted by the BDA revealed that over two-thirds of clinics are struggling financially. 

No date has yet been revealed for the reopening of practices, but the Health Secretary, Matt Hancock, has stressed that emergency care is available and that clinics will reopen as soon as it safe to do so. Lockdown measures are easing gradually, but dentists and patients are still waiting to hear when they can expect routine services to resume.

Join this Discussion

Comments are closed.