HC Deb 09 June 1995 vol 261 cc330-1W
Mr. Timms

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to her answer of 5 April to the hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington (Mr. Forman),Official Report, columns 1213–15, (1) which of the reforms outlined will address levels of oral health in areas of social deprivation; [27333]

(2) what assessment she has made of the findings of Sir Kenneth Bloomfield's review of dental remuneration, paragraphs 5.3 and 6.6, on the effect of the remuneration system on dental practitioners serving comparatively poor patients in a comparatively rich region, with particular reference to inner London; [27335]

(3) what further progress she has made in respect of the findings of the fourth report of the Health Committee of Session 1992–93—HC264—on dental services, in paragraphs 25, 45 and 145, on geographical and social class inequities in oral health; [27334]

(4) what plans she has to accept the recommendations of the Bloomfield review and fourth report of the Health Committee of Session 1992–93 on dental services on funding and dentistry should be through locally sensitive channels; and whether the amounts given to each locality will be weighted with respect to social deprivation. [27336]

Mr. Malone

The package of reforms to dental services I announced on 5 April restate the Government's long-term aim of introducing a pilot system of local purchasing for dentistry when legislative time allows. Under local purchasing, health authorities will be able to assess the needs of the local population and tailor provision of dental care accordingly.

Pilot schemes will look at appropriate channels for the allocation of funding, and social deprivation will be among the issues to be considered. In the interim, the reforms we intend to make to the capitation system for children will target resources on children with poor oral health. This change will be of particular assistance to dentists practising in areas of social deprivation.

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