Another dentist abandons NHS

ANOTHER Felixstowe dentist has today decided to abandon the NHS, adding to the town's worsening health crisis.Andrew Brown, of the Victoria Street practice, has written to all his patients to say in future he will only be offering private treatment - though his three colleagues will continue to see NHS patients.

ANOTHER Felixstowe dentist has today decided to abandon the NHS, adding to the town's worsening health crisis.

Andrew Brown, of the Victoria Street practice, has written to all his patients to say in future he will only be offering private treatment - though his three colleagues will continue to see NHS patients.

In the past few weeks, the Walton House practice has announced that it is to stop all NHS treatment from April and is cutting its 5,000-patient list by 25 to 30 per cent, while Crescent Dental Care has been swamped with people wanting NHS dentists and now has a waiting list of 800.

Mr Brown said: “Having been in extensive negotiation with the Primary Care Trust who organise provision of health care within this area, I have been giving the matter careful consideration.


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“I have decided that I will be treating adult patients on an independent basis, that is not within the health service, with effect from April 1.”

He would still provide NHS care for patients under 18, and other patients who wished to continue with NHS treatment could do so with his colleagues Alcan Pekel , Kate Nightingale or Aysenil Pekel .

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“No patient currently registered will be excluded from the dental list at the practice. No insurance schemes are offered or recommended at this practice,” said Mr Brown.

“I and the rest of the practice are most grateful to patients for the support they have shown over the years and we in turn have been pleased to provide what we hope has been an acceptable level of service.

“Our aim in the current changeable climate is to maintain our service and to give patients a continuing choice as to how they receive this treatment.”

In the county there are just 14 practices taking new NHS patients. At some the waiting list is seven months.

Suffolk East PCT expects the situation to become clearer once the new dentistry contracts come into force in April.

At the moment, it is trying to negotiate extra NHS capacity with those dental practices which are supportive.

The NHS web site is also being be updated with the latest most accurate information about NHS availability and anyone who is seeking a dentist should contact the NHS Direct service.

WEBLINK: www.nhs.uk

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