§ Mr. Michael Brown
To ask the Secretary of State for Health how the fundamental review of the dental remuneration system will be carried forward.
§ Dr. Mawhinney
I am pleased to announce that Sir Kenneth Bloomfield has accepted an invitation from the United Kingdom Health Ministers to review the system of dental remuneration.
The text of my invitation to Sir Kenneth is set out as follows:I am writing on behalf of the UK Health Ministers to confirm my invitation to you to review the system of dental remuneration, and if possible to report before the end of the year.
The terms of reference are:"To conduct a fundamental review of the existing system of remuneration of general dental practitioners and to identify options for change"
There are a number of important points which you will need to bear in mind.First, the review should consider the system of remuneration. The level of remuneration for general dental practitioners are a matter for recommendation by the Review Body on Doctors' and Dentists' remuneration.Second, the aim of the review should be to identify options for remunerating general dental practitioners which would provide a proper framework of financial control; would be fair to dentists and the public and as simple as practicable; and would therefore contribute positively to the development of the NHS dental service.Third, I am looking to you to identify a number of options for change, rather than a single recommendation, though I would be happy for you to weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of each of them.You will of course need to consult a number of interests in the course of the review. To assist you in this, I suggest that we establish a panel of advisers, drawn from the Government departments concerned, the NHS and the dental profession.The Government attaches great importance to your review and looks forward to receiving your advice in due course.