Bernard's News, GDC
Hello Lancashire Just a quick catch up before you all pack up your cases for the summer holidays! Some good news? There is some light at the end of the tunnel I do hope! Funding has been approved to fund the Routine Care Network and more information will be coming out soon. Approval has also been given to fund the new Morecambe Enhanced Training Practice which will support the Morecambe DEC – procurement to start early in the New Year. Funding for appraisal has moved a tad closer but not quite there yet. This is illustrating some progress and is certainly a move in the right direction. In these austere times (despite what David Cameron says) it is difficult to secure additional funding within the NHS; but that does not mean we should stop trying. There may also be some good news forthcoming around funding for Occupational Health Services – don’t get too excited just yet – more to follow! Meetings: regular meetings are still going on such as the Lancashire LDC Executive / Area Team Liaison meeting which has proved to be an excellent opportunity to engage with the Area Team and I am confident nothing will happen in Lancashire that we do not know about. Also, as ever, we are involved in shaping local policy and ensuring that the interests of local dentists are preserved. I would have to say that our Local Area Team is very supportive of the profession and will go to any lengths within their powers to support us in delivering quality dental services. The Local Dental Network (LDN) continues to be the guiding committee for the setting of local dental strategy and again full engagement with the Area Team is in place. Nothing will be implemented in terms of commissioning direction without the support of the LDN and we have representation on the LDN (Andy Cow / Ralph Pickup / Yours Truly). Don’t forget you can keep up to date with these meetings because the minutes are posted on the website. Sharps Injury: we now move to stage two of the process which is to start to test out the effectiveness of the protocol. Issues have arisen around communication at Blackburn which seem to have now been resolved and there are problems with out of area access to Occy Health. As you will recall I worked with the four Lancashire acute trusts on the protocol but there are problems in the far west where dentists in Skelmersdale and Ormskirk understandably want to access Ormskirk Hospital for these services. Guidance in any out of area situation would be to get hold of the sharps protocol for the trust in question and that will then underpin the generic information on the front sheet of the Lancs LDC Exec protocol. In the meantime I am attempting to liaise with Ormskirk Hospital and establish a working relationship, many thanks to Vice Chair of Central LDC, Steve Bass for his valuable contribution to this process. Please flag up any cross border issues in other parts of the county if they occur. Just another thing: having just returned from a short trip to Wales I am still intrigued to see that the Welsh still insist on having their road signs written in both English and Welsh. For me this is fundamentally unnecessary because the English cannot understand what the Welsh directions mean and the Welsh know where they are going anyway!. It does make me wonder how far the Welsh have gone with this – in dentistry for example do they have their medical histories in both languages? Do they have their post operative instructions in both languages? What might the Welsh translations be? I found out a few
Gobellwiden = open your mouth
Llangollen-gogo-spit = have a rinse
Needlesticken = injection
Pullenpushen-toothloosen = extraction
Bungmetallinen = amalgam restoration
If anyone has any other translations that we could include please don’t hesitate to let me know! Onwards and Upwards Bernard Bernard Alston Sec Lancs LDC Exec General Dental Council / Annual Retention Fee I guess most people reading this will be aware of the steep hike in Annual Retention Fees that are planned for this year, to nearly a thousand pounds. If you haven't already responded to the GDC's consultation then please do so here. There seem to be two main two main campaigns against this, which I've come across - let me know if you're aware of others. I'm providing links in case you wish to add your voice to them... The first is a HM Government e-petition, for a review of the Retention fees, which currently has 14552 signatures. You can sign it here. The second, more radical, campaign by Dhru Shah of Dentinaltubules.com is to disband the GDC and overhaul regulation of the profession. It currently has 5265 signatures and can be accessed here. I had an interesting experience recently with the electricity regulator... After six months of problems with Scottish Power I decided I would have to make a formal complaint, and contacted "Ombudsman Services:Energy". I was advised that they can investigate ONLY if: the complaint hasn’t been resolved to your satisfaction after 8 weeks; or the energy company deadlocks the complaint (they say they can do no more to resolve it) before 8 weeks are up. As I hadn't lodged a formal complaint with Scottish Power, they gave me a higher-level customer service number to call. That's how a regulator should act - ensuring complaints are taken seriously and providers act appropriately. The GDC regulates the profession - but shouldn't this start with regulating the in-house complaints process - rather than bypassing it? Let me know what you think! firstname.lastname@example.org Stuart Johnson LDC member / Website & Newsletter Admin.