The risk to patient oral health due to the current crisis in primary dental care provision

13th May 2020


COVID 19 has led to the closure of all routine primary dental care in the UK, resulting in significant and maybe permanent damage to many patient’s oral health. Significant changes will be required before anything except emergency treatment can be delivered. The immediate and long-term effects that this is already having on the nation’s oral health cannot be underestimated and this is likely to be enhanced as many dental practices are facing permanent closure.

This forum is designed to gather opinions from a range of dental professionals actively working in primary care practice and with roles within the BDA, CQC and GDC, develop constructive answers to: what urgent support is required to minimise the effects of COVID 19 on oral health, what may be required to provide ‘best practice’ in the future, and explore how the College can support actions to minimise the adverse effects on patient care and the profession.


  • Helen Craddock - RCSEd Dental Vice Dean
    Prof Helen Craddock is an Emeritus Professor in Dental Education and a former Chair of the Advisory Board in Primary Dental Care. A retired Consultant in Restorative Dentistry at Leeds Dental Institute, she has been a Member of the College since 1999 and a Fellow since 2003. Prior to her academic career, she spent 22 years in General Dental Practice.

  • Richard Cure - RCSEd Convener of Dental Education
    Richard Cure is Associate Professor, Head of Orthodontics at The University of Warwick. He is a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a Fellow of the Faculty of Dental Trainers and a GDC Education Associate. He examines for the College at MOrth, MFDS and MAGDS.


  • Celeste Aouilk-Jaiyeola
    Celeste is a final year dental student at King’s College London and a member of her university dental society. In 2014, she graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Biomedical Sciences at Queen Mary University of London. She is due to start her dental foundation training this September and is awaiting her final examinations.
  • Robert Bland
    Robert has 35 years experience in general dental practice in both the NHS and private sectors. He is Principal Dental Surgeon at Wrea Green Dental Practice and a Member of the Advisory Board in Primary Dental Care and Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons Edinburgh. John is Deputy lead examiner for the College at MAGDS. he is also a GDC Expert Witness Associate and a Specialist Dental Adviser for the CQC.
  • Amanda Borthwick
    Amanda graduated with Distinction from The Eastman University College of London and was awarded the Colgate Award for Excellence. She is currently studying with LSO Warwick for the Orthodontic Therapy qualification. Open to forward thinking and new ideas of promoting oral health, she is a regular participant of the BSDHT study group, and more recently the OTS, where on behalf of Dent O Care has delivered oral health webinars.
  • Eddie Crouch
    Eddie Crouch is the Vice Chairman of the British Dental Association and is currently the Chair of West Midlands Local Dental Committees. He works in Orthodontic Practice in Birmingham and in 2006 successfully went to the High Court to challenge the NHS over contract terms in his PDS Contract. He is regularly seen and heard in the media speaking about Dental Politics.
  • Christopher Leech
    Christopher Leech is a partner at the multi award winning Clear Dentistry in Hampshire. He was the first dentist in the UK to pass the Membership for Advanced General Dental Surgery with the Royal College of Surgeons Edinburgh and also holds his Diploma in Implantology from them. He is an examiner for the Royal College and also sits on the Advisory Board in Primary Dental Care. He is also a member of the Dental Faculty for the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow as well as a former board member for the BACD.
  • John Milne
    John qualified as a dentist from Leeds in 1980 and has worked mostly in general dental practice throughout his career. He has been involved with the politics of dentistry at both local and national level serving as LDC secretary for many years and more recently as Chair. At national level John has been a member of the General Dental Practice Committee of the BDA and was Chair from 2009-2015. More recently he was appointed as the Senior National Dental Advisor to the CQC.
  • Jake Simpkin
    Following a degree in Biological Science and a PGCE in secondary education Jake graduated from UCLAN in 2017. Since graduating he has completed his FD year in a mixed dental practice, he currently works three days a week at a very large 14 surgery NHS practice in central Blackpool and two days a week at a small private practice in Wrea Green. In addition to this Jake works evenings and weekends delivering emergency dental care in the Blackpool area and has put time and effort into helping aspiring young students pursue their passion of becoming dentists.


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