2.8% pay award: Above inflation increase offers some comfort for service in crisis

The British Dental Association (BDA) has said confirmation of second consecutive year of above-inflation pay awards for dentists must now be built on, as part of wider plan to maintain the long term integrity of the service.

The announcement will see 2.8% uplift on pay backdated to April, with no staging. This will apply to hospital and community dentists, with a final uplift to contract values for general dental practitioners to be confirmed following a consultation on expenses. 

In evidence submitted to the DDRB before the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, we made the case that the sustainability of NHS dentistry was already on a knife-edge. With a deal on abatement secured, we have stressed that the viability of the service can only be maintained with parallel action on support for private practice, future NHS contract arrangements and long-term consistency on pay.

BDA Vice Chair Eddie Crouch said:

“These are difficult times for colleagues, and that NHS dentists aren’t being handed another pay cut will offer some comfort.

“Before COVID-19 hit years of pay restraint had already taken their toll. Above inflation increases are starting to repair that damage, and now must be pursued in tandem with other needed action to keep this service afloat.

“We've secured needed progress on abatement and pay. We now need to see a concerted strategy to ensure the nation’s dental services – both NHS and private – have a future.”   

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