Reaching new heights!

More than 60 lectures and workshops around a packed exhibition floor – the Scottish Dental Show 2024 was the best yet

01 July, 2024 / indepth
 Will Peakin    Mike Wilkinson

The Scottish Dental Show reached new heights this year, with a record delegate attendance, packed exhibition floor and a programme of world-leading speakers.

More than 2,000 people attended across the two days of the show, enjoying meeting suppliers and advisers to the profession, gaining free CPD and socialising with colleagues. Ann Craib, Sales & Events Manager for Scottish Dental, said: “This has been our best show to date. Record numbers and delighted exhibitors, which makes my job so worthwhile.

“It was fantastic to see so many people catching up with colleagues, meeting suppliers and advisers and benefitting from a world-class education programme. A huge thank you to the delegates, our exhibitors and to the programme speakers who delivered such high-quality CPD content.”

…we need some time for the sector to get to equilibrium, for practices to understand it

Tom Ferris, the Chief Dental Officer,

The education programme featured more than 60 lectures and workshops delivered by more than 50 speakers. Among them was an update from the Scottish Government on NHS dentistry reform, presented by Tom Ferris, the Chief Dental Officer, and Elaine Hutchison, DCP Advisor. The session focused on improving the quality and accessibility of NHS dentistry in Scotland. It emphasised the need for accountability, value for money, and transparency to ensure high-quality patient care.

Also discussed was the importance of data-driven approaches to understand patient cohorts and caseloads, and the need for a more coordinated approach to engaging and collaborating with dental care professionals. Workforce planning, training and education issues were addressed, as well as the challenges of developing the dental workforce in Scotland and the need for a hybrid model for the LDS exam.

The CDO noted that there are just over 1,000 practices in Scotland offering varying degrees of NHS care and that there are around 3,500 dentists, mainly associates. He said that although the reforms introduced last November had included significantly reduced the number of items of service, that model of payment has some important strengths.

It provides transparency and accountability, he said, meaning that for every pound spent there is a tangible return in patient care.

Although the pandemic interrupted the development of a new model of care, the key themes had remained the same post-pandemic, said the CDO. “We needed to sustain practices. We needed to increase patient access. We needed to focus on prevention-based care, and we needed to promote the skill mix,” he said.

It was clear, he said, that the British Dental Association and the Scottish Dental Practice Committee should be key players in the discussion about the future of NHS dentistry, but that it also necessary to hear a wider range of voices. The Government surveyed the profession, which generated more than 500 responses, and established an advisory committee which, said the CDO, “worked really well.”

As well as being able to calculate and map dental care activity, he said that he was planning to introduce a measure of oral health that would allow dentists to provide a snapshot of their patient cohort. The data could then be anonymised and aggregated to health board level and, ultimately, the national level.

The CDO spoke about the change in checkup interval from six months to a year, but which includes the option for a dentist to see a patient again after three months or 24 months, based entirely on patient need. He said that there was evidence that some patients were being told that if they wanted to be seen more frequently than every 12 months they would have to pay for private treatment. He said has told those patients who had written to him: “This is wrong. These are the facts. Complain to your health board.”

The CDO said that since the reforms were introduced it had been “kind of quiet. I’m taking that as a positive. As I go around, people will take me aside and say ‘It’s actually okay. You know, it’s not perfect, but it’s better than it was; you are kind of on the right track.’ People are just getting on with it. And it seems to be working. I think if it wasn’t, I think the noise from the sector would be deafening.”

He added: “We really need some time for the sector to get to equilibrium, for practices to really understand it, to get into the new system, and then have a few quarters of data to look at patterns, look at variation in treatment patterns, and then work out whether or not we need to do something about and, at that point, we’ll be coming back out to have conversations with people.”

Going forward, said the CDO, key areas of work will be monitoring the impact of the reforms and working with the health boards to harness the data being produced and glean meaningful information. Other areas of work will be the workforce and governance.

On workforce, it had been hoped that the UK Government’s proposal to enable overseas-qualified dentists who have not yet achieved full GDC registration to be able to work in the UK more quickly, through the introduction of a system of provisional registration, would have passed into legislation. The calling of a general election has interrupted this process. “It will happen,” said the CDO, “so it is important to understand what it means and how it will work, and that NHS Scotland will have its own rules after someone has been given provisional registration.”

He added that his team were looking at whether the model of training dental hygienists and therapists that has been established by the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) could be replicated in other locations. The Oral Health Science BSc course is delivered from state-of-the-art training units at UHI House in Inverness, Dumfries Dental Centre and Western Isles Dental Centre in Stornoway, Isle of Lewis.

On governance, he said that patterns of working had undergone a significant shift. “So, we need to understand what that relationship is going to be going forward,” he said, “and how can boards and practices offer those portfolio careers so that we don’t lose people from NHS dentistry.”

The CDO said that the combined practice inspection, a process introduced for all NHS general dental practices in Scotland in 2014, needed to be reviewed. “It’s a bit like the ‘practice police’. It’s kind of into drawers and looking at documents. Surely there must be a better way of doing this. Surely it should be about improvement and not about policing and sanction.”

Concluding, the CDO said: “There is, in my mind, the question of: ‘What does it mean to be an NHS dentist in NHS Scotland today?’ And I don’t think we’ve quite answered that. In the old days, it was you that you were listed, and you had x number of patients. And I don’t really think that’s good enough anymore.

“So, what is it that we would want to see in dentists in the NHS in Scotland, going forward? What is their commitment to the system? What’s their commitment to their patients? Equally, what’s the patient’s commitment to the practice and to their own care? And I think those are some of the governance questions, some of the really quite difficult questions, that we will really need to explore going forward.”

Professor James McCaul, Consultant Oral Maxillofacial Surgeon at Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow, presented Face to face: true stories of life, death and transformation – a powerful look at his work in rebuilding the faces of people severely injured as the result of accidents or being the victims of violence.

Professor McCaul also used the opportunity of speaking to urge dental care professionals to be aware of diagnostic features for mouth cancer and of early referral pathways. He said, he would rather see a patient who had been referred by their practice and be able to say the suspicious patch or lump was not cancer, than a patient not be referred but who would then go on to die from mouth cancer.

In Suicide – how could I possibly save a life?, Professor John Gibson spoke about the experience of losing his son, Cameron, to suicide, the impact it had on him and his family, the steps – literally, walking the length of the United Kingdom – he subsequently took and the establishment and work of The Canmore Trust.

A few days after his presentation he told Scottish Dental: “It was a genuine joy to be at the show although, I cannot lie, I went home exhausted each day! We had many good conversations and at least two such conversations that resulted in life-changing positive outcomes.”

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Key action items from CDO presentation

  • Monitor the impact of the November 2021 reforms and understand the data coming from practices.
  • Work closely with health boards to understand variation across boards.
  • Explore alternative models of governance for practices moving away from a ‘policing’ approach.
  • Consider options for developing local training centres to grow the rural clinical workforce.
  • Engage stakeholders in further conversations around workforce and governance issues.

Education sessions in 2024

Julie Willis, Consultant Clinical Scientist, NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde.
Radiographic image quality, optimisation and radiation protection

Dr Lisa Currie, Clinical Director, The Orthodontic Clinic.
The management of snoring and mild sleep apnoea: a dental perspective

Dr Tariq Ali, Clinical Director and Principal Dentist, Centre for Implant Dentistry.
Implants 101: everything the general dentist should know about implants

Professor Brian Millar, Professor of Blended Learning in Dentistry, King’s College London.

  • Smile design: how to design and create aesthetic restorations
  • Wear is the problem, here is a solution: managing tooth wear

Nick Beacher, Clinical Senior Lecturer and Honorary Consultant in Special Care Dentistry, University of Glasgow.
Safeguarding vulnerable adults: we all have a role to play – you, me and the whole dental team

Dr Christine Park, Senior Clinical University Lecturer and Honorary Consultant in Paediatric Dentistry, Glasgow Dental Hospital & School.
Safeguarding and child protection for dental teams 

Tom Ferris, Chief Dental Officer, and Elaine Hutchison, DCP Advisor.
NHS dentistry reform: an update from The Scottish Government

Professor Mike Lewis, Emeritus Professor, Cardiff University.
Mouth cancer: top tips for primary dental care

Natalie Cook, Dental Tutor, QIiPT Team, NHS Education Scotland.
Infection control and decontamination: an update on current guidance in practice

Professor Mark Greenwood, Chair of Medicine and Surgery in Dentistry, University of Manchester.
Medical emergencies and medical history taking

Flora Couper, Patient Journey Designer.

  • The periodontal protocol ecosystem: the success criteria for delivering effective and profitable periodontal care in the hygiene room
  • Insights discovery: building harmonious relationships

Professor Paul Tipton, Clinical Director, Tipton Training.
The essentials of tooth preparation

John Gibson, Founder and CEO, The Canmore Trust.
Suicide: how could I possibly save a life?

Dr Barry Oulton, Founder, The Confident Dentist Academy.
What if you could achieve more? How to have more time, earn more money and do more enjoyable dentistry

Professor Peter Mossey, Associate Dean (Research), University of Dundee.
Access to Oral Care: an evaluation of global oral health delivery and advocacy for revising the model

Dr Tariq Bashir, Programme Director, Scottish Dental Study Club.
Adhesive, aesthetic dentistry

Siobhan Kelleher, Dental Coach and Clinical Educator.
The science of positive health: the interconnection between oral health, lifestyle medicine and positive psychology

Lauren Long, Hygienist and Therapist Clinical Director, Pain Free Dentistry Group.
Examining excellence: navigating clinical examination and assessment for dental therapists

Claudio Massoli, Managing Director, Rejuv Aesthetics.
Beyond Botox and fillers: the new facial aesthetics revolution you can’t afford to ignore!

Richard O’Brien, Territory Manager, DMG.
Treating white spots with Icon resin infiltration

Dr John McQueen, Cosmetic and Restorative Dentist, and  Dr Andrew Culbard, Restorative and Orthodontic Dentist, Scottish Dental Care.
Rubber dam tips and tricks

Dr Arshad Ali, Clinical Director, Dr William Keys, Specialist in Restorative Dentistry, Scottish Centre for Excellence in Dentistry (SCED).
Building a better treatment plan

Dr Sachin Jauhar, Specialist in Restorative Dentistry, SCED.
Implant planning for complex cases

Dr Graeme Ker, Implantologist, Scottish Dental Care.
Restoring dental implants for the GDP

Carol Rafferty, CEO, Dentherapy Ltd.
Innovations in oral care product development

Kayleigh Robinson, Treatment Coordinator,  New Life Teeth.
For dental nurses: an introduction to becoming a treatment coordinator

Illona McLay, Dental Business Coach.
Dental nurse to practice manager: an introduction to practice management.

Tracy Doole, Dental Hygienist.
Spilling the tea on sustainability!

Aubrey Craig, Senior Dento-Legal Adviser, MDDUS.
We’re only human after all: human factors in dentistry

Lisa Bainham, Practice Management Coach.

  • Bite club: the first rules of creating an outstanding patient journey
  • Pulp friction: managing conflict and drama with your team and patients

Anna Coff, Manager, EQ Accountants.
Topical tax and financial tips for running your dental practice

Stephen Pryce, Independent Financial Adviser, Chase de Vere.
2024 investment workshop for dentists

Gurjit Pall, Legal Director, Thorntons LLP.
UK immigration law: recruitment of overseas dentists and other dental professionals

Roy Hogg, Business Advisory Partner and Head of Dental, Johnston Carmichael.

  • Accounting and taxation: hot topics for dentists
  • Financial digitisation of your practice

Fiona Andrews, GDP, NHS Forth Valley, and Emma O’Keefe, Consultant in Dental Public Health, NHS Fife.
Dentistry: a realistic way forward

Lindsay Mccallum, Practice Manager, Kalyani Dental Lounge.
Implants – Want to earn more? Then Refer and Restore! – Hands On

Dr Mike Gow, Director of the Dental Anxiety Management Unit, The Berkeley Clinic.

  • Dental hypnosis: hypnodontics
  • Dental hypnosis workshop

Emma Riley, Patron, The Society of British Dental Nurses.
Oral cancer in the elderly and the role of the dental nurse

Ian Corbett, Consultant Oral Surgeon and Honorary Senior Lecturer in Oral Surgery, Newcastle University.

  • Medical emergencies in the dental setting
  • Local anaesthesia for dental hygienists
    and dental therapists: an update

Professor James McCaul, Consultant Oral Maxillofacial Surgeon.
Face to face: true stories of life, death and transformation

Dr Henri Diederich, Lead Trainer, Cortically Fixed Academy.
Minimally invasive treatment in the atrophied bone and the BTB approach

Dr Simon Crewe, Forensic Odontologist.
Forensic odontology

Dr Andrea Rodriguez, Lecturer in Dental Public Health and Social Psychology, University of Dundee.
Oral health improvement in marginalised groups: a trans-sectoral approach to the delivery of health improvement within marginalised groups in society

Dr Audrey Kershaw, Specialist in Oral Surgery, Oral Surgery Scotland.
Hypermobility and dentistry: if you can’t connect the issues, think connective tissues

James Green, Maxillofacial and Dental Laboratory Manager, Great Ormond Street.
Orthodontic appliance design: considerations for medically compromised patients

Dr Mital Patel, Chair of the Advisory Board for Implant Dentistry, The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.
Membership in Implant Dentistry: exam information session

Dr Clement Seeballuck, Clinical Lecturer and Specialty Dentist in Paediatric Dentistry, and Mary Gonzalez, Specialty Dentist in Paediatric Dentistry, University of Dundee.
An update on dental trauma for the GDP

Tags: CPD / dental / Education / Events / scottish / Show / Tradeshow

Categories: Feature / Magazine

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