Concerns Over Dentists PPE Bill as Doors Reopen Today, 8 June 2020

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08 Jun 2020


RCSEd says patient safety must not be compromised by core budget reallocation

As dental practices begin reopening their doors from today (Monday 8 June), a leading dental professor is urging the UK Government to provide clarity on how the necessary PPE will be funded without compromising patient safety.

Professor Phil Taylor, Dean Elect of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh’s Faculty of Dental Surgery, has previously expressed concern about the availability of and guidance on PPE in general dental practices, and has today voiced concern about how protective equipment will be paid for.

Professor Taylor said:

“Dentists would might see around 50 patients per day, equating to £1million of PPE each day according to NHS England’s estimates for the London area alone! Even scaling that back to just 10 patients per day, allowing for the necessary cleaning in between aerosol generating procedures, that equates to £65million in a year for dental PPE in London – a very real figure as we expect the current required level of enhanced equipment to continue for many months. When you consider the rest of the country, the cost will be substantial.

“Patient safety is more crucial now than ever, so we are keen to know where this budget is coming from. If it comes from the existing dental budget, where are cuts going to be made? Or can the Government provide assurances that there will be additional budget, safeguarding existing funding and ensuring there is no comprise in patient safety?”

Professor Taylor last week expressed concern over a lack of clarity on PPE requirements for dentists, and a ‘postcode lottery’ of enhanced PPE availability. He believes that many dentists are still not adequately prepared to reopen their doors today in line with Government guidelines.

He continued:

“There is huge disparity across the UK in dentists’ readiness to safely return to work. Guidelines on PPE remain unclear and supply is inconsistent. We fear that patients who are expecting their local practice to be open from today will find that it is not, and will be confused, frustrated, and still unable to access care.

“As a College we are doing our utmost to support members as they reopen, but it is very challenging. We need urgent clarity on the requirement, supply and budget arrangements for PPE.”


Issued by Beattie on behalf of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. For further information, please contact the team on or 07730 415 096.   


About The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and its Faculty of Dental Surgery:

  • Established in 1982, it is the largest of the College's faculties with almost 7,000 Fellows and Members worldwide and its own Council.
  • The Dental Faculty's portfolio includes a wide range of exams and courses held in 17 countries around the world.
  • Internationally, the Faculty works with the National University of Singapore, the Royal Australasian College of Dental Surgeons, the College of Dental Surgeons of Hong Kong, and the American Board of Oral Medicine.
  • RCSEd was first incorporated as the Barber Surgeons of Edinburgh in 1505, and is based in Edinburgh and Birmingham.
  • It is one of the oldest surgical corporations in the world with a worldwide membership of 29,600. The majority of our members practice across the UK, with 15,000 professionals based in England and Wales.
  • The College also has a significant global presence with members in over 100 countries worldwide. 
  • The College promotes the highest standards of surgical and dental practice through education, training and examinations, its liaison with external medical bodies and representation of the modern surgical and dental workforce.
  • Find RCSEd here, on Twitter, on Facebook and Instagram 


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