Numbers seeing NHS dentists in Cumbria drops by over 22,000 in just two years
MP Tim Farron has described the NHS dentist system as being in "crisis", after new figures released by the NHS revealed that over 22,000 fewer people in Cumbria saw an NHS dentist after the introduction of the new dental contract.
According to these figures (which are broken down by Primary Care Trust) 290,793 people in the Cumbria area had seen an NHS dentist in a sample taken on 31 March 2006 before the contracts were in introduced, compared with 268,532 people on the 30th June 2008.
Commenting Mr Farron said:
"These figures clearly show that the Government's Dental Contract has failed local patients"
"The fact that 22,000 fewer people in Cumbria are now seeing an NHS Dentist in just two years is clear and present evidence of a system that is not working.
"Dentists are leaving the NHS and their patients are often all-but forced to follow them, therefore having to pay for dentistry that they had already paid for through their taxes"
"When are Government Ministers going to take their heads out of the sand, admit they made a mistake, and put it right?"
The full figures can be found at: http://www.ic.nhs.uk/pubs/dentalstats0809q1