New dentist set to open next month in central Ipswich
- Credit: Quest Dental Care
A new private dentist is set to open in central Ipswich, amid concern over a shortage of dental services in the town.
The new practice, Quest Dental Care, will initially offer only private treatment, however, the owners say they may also provide NHS treatment in future.
The surgery will be based in the former Action Outdoors shop in Great Colman Street. It will be run alongside sister practice Ipswich Dental Surgery, in Berners Street, which cares for both NHS and private patients.
Dr Payal Bhalla, currently lead dentist at Ipswich Dental, will take on the same role at the new practice, which is currently accepting patient sign-ups via its website.
She said: "We are excited to open the doors on November 4, and can’t wait to welcome our first patients."
Dr Bhalla, who has been practising for more than 15 years, said: "We first experienced practice ownership four years ago in Ipswich.
"Having grown from a two-surgery practice to a four-surgery practice, we toyed with the idea of ‘squeezing’ in a fifth surgery. However, we soon realised that we were restricted by space in the existing premises."
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She added: "I had a burning desire to create something of my own. At this stage of my career, I wanted to work on my own terms without having to worry about targets."
Dr Bhalla and her team drew up a "wish-list" of essential features for their new surgery, including visibility, footfall, transport links, ground floor location and parking within 50 metres.
"The other main consideration was to employ an experienced team who knew the dental industry very well," she said.
Quest will offer services including dental examinations, emergency treatment and treatment for nervous patients, fillings, dentures, smile makeovers, teeth straightening, whitening and dental implants.
Late evening and weekend appointments will be available as well as a family dental care insurance option.
The new opening comes amid concern over a shortage of dentists across Suffolk.
The Toothless in Suffolk campaign group has said people are "literally pulling out teeth" over the issue, and is organising a march and rally in Bury St Edmunds on October 17, to protest over the lack of NHS dentists.