Norfolk Health Chiefs Urged to Focus on Oral Health

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Health chiefs in Norfolk have been urged to invest more money into oral health services to try and reduce the number of people suffering from dental decay in the area.

Members of NHS England and the Norfolk Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee have urged local health authorities to launch a new campaign to raise awareness of oral health issues in a bid to cut rates of decay in the future. The move comes as national figures show that thousands of people suffer from decay in the UK, despite the fact that it is preventable. Last week, figures revealed that 500 children are admitted for hospital treatment for dental issues every year and public health figures are working with dentists to try and reduce the numbers of people affected.

Director of commissioning at NHS England’s East Anglia department, Katie Norton, said that tooth decay can be prevented and urged local health officials to step up the campaign to educate people about oral disease prevention and encourage healthier lifestyle habits.

Ms Norton said that figures show that access to dental services in Norfolk is relatively good; however, there were variations in different areas of the county and public health officials are urged to do more to make the playing field level and encourage people from deprived areas.

Chairman of the scrutiny committee, Michael Carttiss, said that the figures related to child admissions are alarming and called for a school service, which would enable children to access free dental check-ups at school.

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