HC Deb 07 May 1996 vol 277 cc28-9W
Mr. Llwyd

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many patients received free dental treatment in(a) 1990, (b) 1992 and (c) 1994; and if he will make a statement; [26978]

(2) how many people were entitled to receive free dental treatment in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. [26980]

Mr. Malone

All children are eligible for free dental treatment. Information is not available about the number of adults eligible to receive free dental treatment.

The information available about treatment provided to adults is shown in the table.

Number of courses of dental treatment administered to adults eligible for free treatment: 1990; 1992–93; 1994–95
Adults Six months September 1990 1992–93 1994–95
Courses administered to adult patients eligible for free treatment 2,029 5,653 5,621

Information is collected in terms of courses of treatment rather than patients. This table excludes courses for which there is no patient charge, including arrest of haemorrhage, and repairs and replacements under guarantee, administered to charge payers.

Information is not available for the whole of 1990. The introduction of the new contract in October 1990 affected information flows. Data have been provided for the six months, April to September.

Since October 1990 and the introduction of the new contract, children's dental treatment has largely been paid for by capitation payments. Records of individual treatments are not collected centrally. All treatment for children is free.