Women's Health

Children would have their teeth checked at school as part of Rishi Sunak’s plan to restore NHS dentistry


Children could have dental checkups in primary schools as part of Rishi Sunak’s plans to improve the nation’s teeth.

The Conservative leadership hopeful has pledged to launch a pilot program so under-11s can see a dentist in the classroom.

The former Chancellor’s wish is part of a five-point plan he says he would adopt on ‘day one’ as Prime Minister to ‘restore NHS dentistry’.

Conservative leadership candidate Rishi Sunak, the son of a GP and pharmacist, has said he wants to 'restore' NHS dentistry

Conservative leadership candidate Rishi Sunak, the son of a GP and pharmacist, has said he wants to ‘restore’ NHS dentistry

His proposals include funding dentistry, changing contracts to keep NHS dentists in the health service and ‘upgrading’ dental teams.

He is also committed to improving oral hygiene education for children and their parents.

Mr Sunak, the son of a GP and pharmacist, said: ‘NHS dentistry is under unprecedented pressure with people unable to get the treatment they need, leaving them in pain or having to to shell out thousands for private care.

“My five-point plan will be activated on day one to free up dental professionals to do their jobs, encourage NHS-trained dentists to stay in the NHS and focus on prevention because it’s always better than the remedy.

“As Prime Minister, I will focus on delivering better value for the people of Britain through our NHS.”

Nine in 10 dental practices are not accepting new NHS patients, and eight in 10 are also not accepting new children, according to a recent BBC survey.

NHS dentists are under 'unprecedented pressure' with nine in 10 practices not accepting new patients, BBC research finds

NHS dentists are under 'unprecedented pressure' with nine in 10 practices not accepting new patients, BBC research finds

NHS dentists are under ‘unprecedented pressure’ with nine in 10 practices not accepting new patients, BBC research finds

The British Dental Association says 3,000 dentists have walked away completely from NHS dentistry work since the start of the pandemic.

And a report this week found untreated tooth decay is widespread among primary school-aged children – yet half of children in England cannot access an NHS dentist.

A study by an oral health charity, the Dental Wellness Trust, found that 38% of children in England had untreated active tooth decay in their primary teeth.

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