HC Deb 21 May 2004 vol 421 cc1258-9W
Mr. Crausby

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of adults in(a) Bolton, (b) Greater Manchester and (c) England were registered with an NHS dentist in each of the last seven years. [172598]

Ms Rosie Winterton

The information available is for general dental service (GDS) dentist registration rates for adults in the Wigan and Bolton Health Authority at 30 September 1997 to 2001, and for Bolton Primary Care Trust (PCT), which is part of the Greater Manchester Strategic Health Authority (SHA) for 30 September 2002 and 30 September 2003. Figures for the Greater Manchester SHA area are also shown.

Registrations cover patients who have been to a general dental service dentist within the past 15 months. These will exclude patients who choose to attend occasionally who have not been to a dentist during that period. Registrations are included in the area of the dentist. Patients may choose to have their dental services in a different PCT area from the one in which they live. The registration period was changed for new registrations and registrations extending from September 1996. Previously the period for adults was 24 months while children's registration lapsed at the end of the following calendar year. This caused registration numbers to fall between November 1997 and August 1998.

National health service dental services are also provided by the community dental service, personal dental service, the salaried service of the GDS and hospital dental service. These services do not require the patient to be registered with a dentist before treatment.

Ms Rosie Winterton

The table shows the number of dentists in the general, personal, community, and hospital dental services.

The figures given are for 30 September for each year. Before 2002 Bolton was part of the Wigan and Bolton Health Authority. In 2002 health authorities (HAs) were replaced by primary care trusts (PCTs).

Figures for the number of dentists who treat private patients only are not available. Few dentists are purely private. The Office of Fair Trading report "The private dentistry market" in the UK stated that only 210 practices are totally private in the United Kingdom out of 11,000 practices in total.

Figures are also given for England.

Number of dentists at 30 September of each year
1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
Wigan and Bolton HA 205 210 211 219 207 n/a n/a
Bolton PCT n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a 85 84
Greater Manchester Strategic Health Authority area 1,115 1,127 1,162 1,155 1,150 1,161 1,203
England 20,483 21,041 21,556 21,902 22,438 23,051 23,490
n/a = not available

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