Tag Archives: NHS dentistry

20 March 2024 – today’s press releases

  • Ed Davey launches local election campaign with hourglass stunt
  • SEPA log thousands of complaints about state of Scottish waterways
  • Welsh Lib Dems raise concerns over future of dentistry in Wales
  • “Communities must benefit from new grid developments” – Welsh Lib Dems

Ed Davey launches local election campaign with hourglass stunt

  • Lib Dem Leader unveils hourglass stunt in Blue Wall Hertfordshire, declaring “Time’s running out for Rishi Sunak”
  • Ed Davey focusses his party’s campaign on local health and social care services, sewage pollution in rivers and the cost of living crisis.

Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey has launched his party’s English local elections campaign with an hourglass stunt, declaring “Time’s running out for Rishi Sunak”, and calling on the country to vote for change in May.

Ed Davey visited the Blue Wall battleground of Harpenden in Hertfordshire, which is set to be a marginal constituency at the next election. He will begin his local election tour this week, visiting every corner of the country as the party looks to make further gains on local councils.

The Liberal Democrats made major gains across Hertfordshire from the Conservative party in last year’s local elections. In 2023, the Liberal Democrats gained over 400 council seats across the country.

At today’s launch, Ed Davey unveiled a blue and gold hourglass in front of Liberal Democrat activists. After turning it upside down, the sand revealed the words ‘Time’s Running Out Rishi!’ He was joined by St.Albans MP and Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats Daisy Cooper, and Victoria Collins, the party’s parliamentary candidate for Harpenden and Berkhamsted.

The Liberal Democrats will focus their local elections campaign on local health and social care services, as well as the local environment and the ongoing cost of living crisis.

Speaking after the stunt, Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey said:

Time’s running out for Rishi Sunak. He might have bottled a May General Election.

He might hope the tide will turn, squatting in Downing Street for a few more months.

But even the Prime Minister can’t deny people across England the chance to have their say in local elections on the Second of May.

Rishi Sunak’s government is running out of road because people know it is time for change.

And people are voting for us because it is time for the Liberal Democrats.

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8 February 2024 – today’s press releases (part 1)

  • NHS waiting lists: Sunak’s broken pledge having “catastrophic impact”
  • A&E waits: This Conservative government is a catastrophe for our NHS
  • 17% spike in children’s tooth extractions: If dental care under this Conservative government was a tooth, it would need extraction

NHS waiting lists: Sunak’s broken pledge having “catastrophic impact”

The latest NHS figures show that waiting lists have grown by almost 400,000 to 7.6 million since Rishi Sunak made his pledge to cut them in January 2023.

Commenting, Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey MP said:

Rishi Sunak has proven time and time again that he cannot be trusted to cut NHS waiting times. Patients across the country are waiting desperately for appointments, while Conservative MPs continue to fight amongst themselves.

It is clear that Rishi Sunak’s broken pledge is having a catastrophic impact on our NHS. His planned NHS spending cuts must be cancelled now to make sure patients get the care they deserve.

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7 February 2024 – today’s press releases

  • Government have left dental services to rot and now think they can rebuild it with a handful of toothpicks
  • 2.2 million people’s work impacted by being stuck on NHS waiting lists
  • Dentist dossier: Five Conservative failures on dental care
  • “More opportunities needed for young people living in rural Wales”- Welsh Lib Dems

Government have left dental services to rot and now think they can rebuild it with a handful of toothpicks

Responding to Health Secretary Victoria Atkins morning interviews on the Government’s new dental plan, Liberal Democrat Health spokesperson Daisy Cooper MP said:

Seeing a Minister duck and dive on the reality of dental funding cuts will be hard to swallow for millions who have been left waiting for so long under this Government.

The reality is they’ve left our dental services to rot and now think they can rebuild it with a handful of toothpicks.

People are sick and tired of a Conservative government that doesn’t know how to fix yet another crisis of its own making.

2.2 million people’s work impacted by being stuck on NHS waiting lists

Around 2.2 million people are seeing their work impacted by being stuck on waiting lists for NHS treatment, including many going on long-term sick leave or reducing their hours, analysis by the Liberal Democrats has revealed.

This is up from 1.41 million people whose work was being affected by waiting for NHS treatment in January 2023. It comes after Rishi Sunak admitted this week he has failed to meet his pledge to bring down NHS waiting lists.

The Liberal Democrats said it showed the Conservative government’s failure to tackle soaring NHS waiting lists was dealing a “hammer blow” to the economy.

The figures are based on the latest Office for National Statistics survey looking at the impact of being on an NHS waiting list, conducted between October 2023 and January 2024. The survey found that over one in four adults report they are waiting for a hospital appointment, test, or to start receiving medical treatment through the NHS.

Among those who said their lives had been impacted by waiting for NHS treatment, 24% said their work had been affected, equivalent to over 2.2 million people across the country. Of these, the survey suggests that around 626,300 (29%) people had reduced their hours, 367,000 (17%) had gone on long-term sick leave and 151,000 (7%) had stopped working to go on illness related benefits.

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6 February 2024 – today’s press releases

  • Sunak interview: Most people worry when they are hit with a surprise £1,000 bill, the PM does not even register it
  • PopCon: Tory MPs at launch pocketed £85,000 in severance payments
  • Dental plan “too little too late” for people desperately queuing in Bristol
  • “No child deserves to go hungry”- Welsh Lib Dems
  • Mid and West Wales MS Jane Dodds urges for more support for rural GP’s
  • “Simply papering over the cracks in our services”- Welsh Lib Dems

Sunak interview: Most people worry when they are hit with a surprise £1,000 bill, the PM does not even register it

Responding to the Prime Minister’s interview this morning, Liberal Democrat Deputy Leader Daisy Cooper MP said:

Rishi Sunak either does not care or does not get it. As the Prime Minister buries his head in the sand and pretends everything is fine, people across the country are suffering.

Most people when they are hit with a surprise £1,000 bill worry about how they are going to make their next mortgage payments or put food on the table for their children.

Instead, the Prime Minister does not even register the significance of that amount of money. Out of touch does not even begin to describe Sunak.

The Prime Minister’s cold soundbites that everything is working simply do not survive contact with reality.

PopCon: Tory MPs at launch pocketed £85,000 in severance payments

The Conservative MPs at today’s Popular Conservatism launch pocketed almost £85,000 in taxpayer-funded pay-outs, analysis by the Liberal Democrats has revealed.

The Liberal Democrats said, “This is not popular Conservatism, it’s economic vandalism.”

Liz Truss pocketed a £18,660 taxpayer payout despite previously criticising “handouts” to help with the cost of living, while Jacob Rees-Mogg claimed £16,800 despite attacking the size of the state. Other Conservative MPs who attended the event, including former Chief Whip Wendy Morton, former Home Secretary Priti Patel and ex-education minister Andrea Jenkyns, all took severance payments worth thousands of pounds. In total Conservative MPs at the event pocketed £84,955 in taxpayer-funded payouts.

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Farron: Children are missing school to go abroad for dental treatment

We all know that NHS dental appointments can be almost impossible to access in many areas of the country.

Liberal Democrats have been highlighting this for months and calling on the Government to do more to ensure people can access this key service.

Yesterday, Tim Farron spoke in an opposition day debate on dental services and said that he had been told that some children were missing school to go abroad for dental appointments because they couldn’t get them locally:

I have heard at first hand from my constituents about the shocking scale of the difficulty of getting access to appointments for children. One attendance officer at one of our primary schools wrote to me earlier last year after she found that families in her school were going abroad for dental appointments. She said:

“Tim, I felt compelled to email you to tell you… We have a high number of children who are regularly missing out on education due to being unable to register with a local NHS dentist. A large number of our children have Polish, Romanian, Latvian and Ukrainian parents and therefore will find it easier to travel back to their parents’ original home country rather than wait for a local NHS dentist who is accepting patients.”

Wow! Let us be clear: she is saying that some children in Cumbria find it easier to get dental treatment travelling to a war zone than to access the NHS dental care that their parents have already paid for through their taxes.

He also highlighted that tooth decay was the number 1 reason for paediatric hospital admissions on his path. That is so shocking. The implications of poor dental health in childhood can last for a lifetime. Tooth decay is preventable and manageable. Free access to a dentist should be a right for children.

Tim said:

In 2022, the BDA found that one in four five-year-olds in my community in Cumbria had tooth decay, and that tooth decay was the No. 1 reason for hospital admissions among young people. Regular dental appointments are vital for preventing tooth decay, and even more so for children, whose teeth tend to decay more quickly. However, fewer and fewer children are able to access those Toggle showing location ofColumn 195appointments because of the negligence of this Government. In Cumbria, the proportion of children seen by a dentist in the NHS each year went from 64% in 2018 to just 50% last year, a drop of 14% in five years. Half of our children in our communities—from Grasmere to Grange, Appleby to Ambleside, Kendal to Kirkby Stephen and Windermere to Warcop—do not have access to an NHS dentist. That is a disgrace.

The situation was worse for adults, with a structural problem in that the NHS Trust only receive half the money it needs to provide services for everyone who needs them.

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Nearly 4.5 million children not seen by an NHS dentist in the past year

  • 4.4 million children not seen by an NHS dentist in the last 12 months
  • 22 million adults not seen by an NHS dentist in the past 2 years
  • Lib Dem Health Spokesperson Daisy Cooper visits dentist in Mid Bedfordshire and calls for boost to NHS dentist appointments and a cut to VAT on children’s toothpaste

Over 4.4 million children in England have not been seen by an NHS dentist for at least a year, shocking new figures published by the Liberal Democrats have revealed.

The research, commissioned from the House of Commons Library, estimates the number of children who weren’t seen by an NHS …

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23 May 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Debt Figures: Proof of more Govt economic mismanagement
  • Raab must stand down now and trigger by-election
  • Braverman: Sunak’s endless dither and delay must end now
  • Dentist Numbers: Sunak must correct the record

Debt Figures: Proof of more Govt economic mismanagement

Responding to the latest debt figures which show the UK borrowed more than expected last month, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

These figures continue to show the mess caused by the Conservative Government’s economic mismanagement. The British taxpayer is still feeling the hit from Liz Truss’ disastrous mini-budget.

It is frankly shocking that the Government has still not put people first by putting a proper windfall tax in place and reversing its unfair tax cuts for the big banks.

It is safe to say that the Conservatives can never be trusted to run our country’s economy ever again.

Raab must stand down now and trigger by-election

The Liberal Democrats have called on Dominic Raab to stand down now and trigger a by-election, warning that the people of Esher and Walton deserve better than a “bully MP who has thrown in the towel.”

It comes after the Liberal Democrats overtook the Conservatives to become the largest party on Raab’s local Elmbridge Council at the local elections on 5 May, gaining six councillors.

The Liberal Democrats topped the poll in the Esher and Walton constituency at the local elections, gaining 41% of the vote compared to 31% for the Conservative Party.

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NHS dentistry survey: 1 in 4 delaying or avoiding treatment

Responding to the survey from the British Dental Association (BDA) showing nearly a quarter (23%) of adults are delaying or going without NHS dental treatment for cost reasons, Liberal Democrat Health Spokesperson Daisy Cooper MP said:

Whacking up charges for NHS dental appointments at a time when people are struggling to pay the bills shows just how out of touch this Conservative Government is.

This price hike will do nothing to fix NHS dentistry. All it will mean is fewer people getting the care and treatment they need, with ever more people turning to dangerous DIY dentistry.

The Government needs to

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19 April 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Rise in “dental deserts” leaves millions struggling to get NHS dentist appointment
  • Inflation: Deadly price hikes cannot go on any longer

Rise in “dental deserts” leaves millions struggling to get NHS dentist appointment

    Six in ten areas have seen a rise in the number of people per dentist since 2019
  • Some areas have over 3,000 people per NHS dentist leaving people struggling to get an appointment
  • Lib Dem Leader calls for NHS dentist rescue plan to prevent desperate people resorting to DIY dentistry

Over six in ten local areas in England have seen a rise in the number of people per dentist since 2019, new analysis commissioned by the Liberal Democrats has revealed.

The Commons Library research shows how the rise in “dental deserts” has left people struggling to get an appointment, with some areas now having over 3,000 people for every NHS dentist. 65 of 104 local areas in England have seen the number of people per dentist rise since 2019, the figures show.

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28 March 2023 – today’s press releases (Welsh Edition)

  • Welsh Liberal Democrats Launch Plan to Save NHS Dentistry in Wales
  • Interest Rate Rise Signals More Pain for Homeowners in Powys

Welsh Liberal Democrats Launch Plan to Save NHS Dentistry in Wales

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have launched their plans to save NHS dentistry in Wales, warning that unless the Welsh Labour Government takes action now NHS dentistry risks going extinct.

The Party have accused Labour Ministers in Cardiff Bay of utterly failing to get to grips with the problem, allowing an appalling two-tier system of dentistry in Wales to flourish whereby if you can afford it you go private, but those who can’t are left waiting in agony for months and sometimes years.

Talking to her party Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds outlined that using her influence to fix NHS dentistry is one of her top priorities in the Senedd.

A previous FOI by the Welsh Liberal Democrats showed that over 800 children in Powys were waiting for an NHS dentist while in Cardiff the waiting list for children and adults is over 15,000 people. Other health boards do not operate centralised waiting lists which the Liberal Democrats state is a problem in itself.

Among the proposed actions laid out in the report, which was produced with industry professionals include:

  • Resolving outstanding contract issues as a priority
  • Integrating primary dental care more closely with other NHS primary care, especially to ensure that services are available in remote and rural areas
  • Increasing per-capita spending from the current £47 to match the levels of Scotland (£55) and Northern Ireland (£57)
  • Setting targets for Health Boards in terms of numbers of, and waiting times for, appointments, empowering them to use salaried staff to achieve those targets as well as entering into agreements with private sector providers
  • Setting up set up a national waiting list system to ensure that the process of getting an appointment is more efficient, and that fewer appointments are lost
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17-19 March 2023 – the Conference weekend press releases (part 2)

  • Lib Dems call for emergency action to end dental deserts
  • Banks’ £17.8 billion tax cut could have funded pay rise for 150,000 carers
  • Lib Dems call for long-term strategy to end energy crisis

Lib Dems call for emergency action to end dental deserts

The Liberal Democrats have blasted the Government for the spread of ‘dental deserts’ across the UK.

Vast areas of the country are without access to NHS dental appointments, often in rural or deprived areas.

The Party passed a motion at its Spring Conference today which called for urgent reform to the NHS dental contract to ensure everyone can get the care they need and isn’t forced to go private.

The plans also call for an emergency scheme to ensure children, pregnant women and young mothers have access to their free check ups on time.

This comes as Healthwatch England found that 41% of people are struggling to get an NHS dental appointment, with one in five unable to access all the treatments they needed.

Under the proposals, there would be an increase to the number of dentist training places in the UK and continued recognition of EU trained dentists’ qualifications.

The Liberal Democrats are also calling for the removal of VAT on children’s toothbrushes and children’s toothpaste.

Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Health and Social Care, Daisy Cooper MP said:

Our NHS dental system is completely broken. NHS appointments are scarce at best and in some places don’t exist at all. People are being forced to spend hundreds if not thousands of pounds on private dental care with some even resorting to their own at-home DIY dentistry.

This Conservative Government has done next to nothing to tackle this crisis.

Rishi Sunak would rather engage in divisive culture wars to cover up his government’s appalling record on the NHS, which is leaving dental patients in pain and distress.

The Liberal Democrats believe that everyone should be able to access a dentist when they need one.

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15-16 February 2023 – two day’s worth of press releases

  • Welsh Lib Dems Respond to Welsh Dental Report
  • Inflation Stats: Hard-working people are paying the price for Conservative incompetence
  • British Gas profits: A betrayal for customers across the country

Welsh Lib Dems Respond to Welsh Dental Report

Responding to the publication of the Health and Social Care Committee report on dentistry in Wales, Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds MS said:

I welcome the publication of this report and its recommendations. Since being elected I have made securing access to NHS dentistry one of my top priorities and the issue regularly fills my inbox.

NHS dental provision in Wales is not good enough, and this report raises really important questions about the reasons why Labour has allowed a two-tier dental system in Wales to develop, where the rich can go private and everyone else is left languishing on waiting lists.

I am also disappointed to hear that relations between Welsh Government and the dental profession are at a low point when, to deal with both the effects of the pandemic and the longer-term structural problems in NHS dentistry, we need Government and dentists to work together.

Ultimately we need to ensure the resources are in place to fix this problem, including raising spend on dentistry per head to similar levels as Scotland or Northern Ireland as I argued for in the most recent Welsh Government budget debate. By failing to address this issue now Labour is potentially creating a longer-term problem.

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21 September 2022 – today’s press releases

  • Business energy bills announcement: a temporary sticking plaster
  • IFS debt analysis: Taxpayers footing the bill for Truss’s ideological obsessions
  • Conservatives handing banks a £6 billion tax cut, new research reveals
  • Calls for an Investigation into Failed Welsh Government Insulation Schemes
  • Demands Welsh Government ‘Names and Shame’ Property Developers Failing to Act on the Building Safety Scandal
  • Dental Crisis: Only 34% of Patients in Southwark Have Been Seen by an NHS Dentist in Past Two Years

Business energy bills announcement: a temporary sticking plaster

Responding to the government announcement on bills for businesses and the public sector, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson, Sarah Olney MP said:

This temporary sticking plaster comes too late for the many small businesses that already closed their doors for the last time because they couldn’t afford soaring bills.

The Conservatives have sat on their hands for months while treasured pubs, cafes and high street shops went to the wall.

This delayed announcement will leave our small businesses, schools and hospitals under a cloud of damaging uncertainty. The government have no plan beyond these next six months, paralysing businesses who need to make decisions for the long term. Support for high streets and public services should be in place for at least the next year and include measures to improve energy efficiency and cut bills in the long term.

The announcement shows the Conservatives have no plan and no understanding of the pressures facing our businesses and public services.

IFS debt analysis: Taxpayers footing the bill for Truss’s ideological obsessions

Responding to IFS analysis which shows debt is being left on an unsustainable path by the government, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney said:

Liz Truss is asking hard-pressed taxpayers to fund her ideological obsessions in the middle of the biggest cost of living crisis in a generation. This is no way to govern Britain.

The Conservatives are prioritising record oil company profits and bankers’ bonuses whilst families struggle to pay their own heating bills.

This Government has lost all sense of fiscal responsibility. Future generations will be paying off the Conservatives’ debt for years to come with no guarantee of economic growth.

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25 August 2022 – today’s press releases

  • GCSEs: Government deserves an ‘F’ for letting down pupils
  • Missing: UK’s Foreign Secretary. Last seen leaving G20 early
  • Dentist crisis escalates as new data reveals drop in NHS dental appointments

GCSEs: Government deserves an ‘F’ for letting down pupils

Responding to today’s GCSE results, Liberal Democrat Education Spokesperson Munira Wilson MP said:

The Conservatives have fiddled the figures and failed our young people yet again. Ministers have thrown into question thousands of students’ futures by taking their grades away to correct two years of exam chaos.

Young people receiving their results today faced unprecedented disruption to their studies. The Government deserves an ‘F’ for letting down these pupils, their parents and their teachers since day one of the pandemic.

This uncaring Conservative carousel of Education Secretaries cannot be trusted with our young people’s future any longer. We need proper investment in helping children recover lost learning from the pandemic, and we need them gone.

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Dentist staffing crisis as almost 1,000 walk away

Data acquired by the Liberal Democrats has revealed a growing dentist staffing crisis as almost 1,000 practitioners have walked away from the profession in the past twelve months.

Official figures show there were 23,733 dental practitioners in 2021 – 951 fewer than the previous year, leaving more patients struggling to get the dental care they need.

The information, first covered in the Express, was published in response to a Parliamentary Question by Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey, who is calling for urgent action to ensure people can get the treatment they need.

Commenting, Ed Davey MP said:

The lack of NHS dentists across the

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Recent Comments

  • Martin Pierce
    Lots of good points, but neither the article nor 6 of the 7 comments mention Brexit. All this good stuff needs funding - you can't wish a better NHS into existe...
  • David Simpson
    Perhaps we should point out that according to Cambridge Econometrics, leaving the EU has cost our economy £140 billion....
  • Yusuf Osman
    A good piece. I support free social care for the elderly! I think though it should be extended to free social care for anyone that needs it. Don't forget there ...
  • Nonconformistradical
    @Mark Frankel "More GPs for more face-to-face consultations is not a good use of resources." On what grounds do you say this? The media is full of stories ...
  • David Garlick
    This is a vision that we need to get across to the public. It will cost more in taxation whoever forms the next government. Sadly many will vote for the option ...