§ 27. Mr. Pavitt
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what arrangements are made for accounting for sums received by dentists from National Health Service patients when the treatment is less than £14.50 and in consequence is not included in estimates forms submitted.
§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
Dentists are required by their terms of service to complete an estimate form for every patient they accept for NHS treatment, to include on that form the whole of the treatment necessary in their opinion to make the patient dentally fit—unless the patient has been accepted for occasional treatment only—and to send that form to the Dental Estimates Board. Dentists are also required to give every patient they accept for NHS treatment — except those accepted for occasional treatment only—an acceptance form and a receipt for any NHS charges paid. They are also required to keep a record of the treatment provided, and these records must be produced or sent to the Dental Estimates Board, the family practitioner committee or a dental officer of our Department on request. Any dentist who fails to complete an estimate form accurately is therefore in breach of his terms of service. Any discrepancies which suggested that a breach of the terms of service might have occurred can be referred by the Dental Estimates Board or the family practitioner committee for service committee action which could lead to financial or other sanctions.
§ Mr. Pavitt
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list in the Official Report the headings under which a dentist may claim expenses other than those incurred for staff salaries, premises and equipment.
§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
Dentists cannot claim expenses directly under the NHS. The NHS scale of fees is calculated to meet the average expenses incurred by dentists in treating NHS patients. That average is calculated on the basis of information obtained from the Inland Revenue. The expenses concerned are all those allowable for tax purposes by the Inland Revenue except for superannuation contributions.