It doesn’t seem like 5 years since we took over Park Lane Orthodontics, and looking back it is almost unbelievable how much has changed; not just all the building work we have carried out to fully modernise and improve the practice, but also the way NHS dentistry is delivered.
In 2006, the way dentists and orthodontists carried out NHS treatment radically altered. For orthodontists, the new way of working delivered a much steadier flow of money but the number of treatments we could do was fixed, so once a practice had completed their “allocated” number of treatments, everyone had to then wait for the next year before they could start any new patients. Frustrating for some as this inevitably led to waiting lists for assessments and treatment.
In 2010 more major change is upon us! As daunting as it seems we believe the new changes will be the making of our profession, with a return to good quality dentistry delivered by motivated and committed professionals for the good of their patients. The first is the introduction of more defined standards for cross infection control in dentistry (HTM-01-05). This document lays down standards that must be met by all practices by the end of the year, and also gives guidelines for best practice. At Park Lane Orthodontics, we made the decision to refurbish the surgeries immediately to enable us to achieve the best practice standards now, and we are confident that we are well abreast of the changes that are coming. The high-tech surgeries look fantastic, and having a room dedicated to cleaning the instruments and storing them in an environment away from the surgeries is ensuring an extremely high level of cross infection control.
The second major change is that all dental practices (including Private practices) must be registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC). In order to be registered there are 16 patient outcomes that must be met by the practice in order to be allowed to treat patients. We are well on our way to achieving these with our fantastic team and newly “buffed” surgeries.
Personally, Ben and I have found the last 5 years challenging, stimulating and enjoyable, and although we have invested a great deal of time, money and energy into the practice we wouldn’t have it any other way.
We are excited to be a part of the “dental revolution”, and look forward to the changes that approach us which will ultimately have a positive impact on each and every patient treated.