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General Dental Services (Amendment No. 3) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2001

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Amendment of Schedule 2 to the principal Regulations

4.  In Schedule 2 to the principal Regulations (terms of service for dentists)—

(a)for paragraph 17 (occasional treatment) substitute—

17.(1) Whether or not a patient has entered into a continuing care arrangement or capitation arrangement with another dentist, a dentist who is not acting on behalf of that dentist may provide any of the items listed in sub-paragraph (2) as occasional treatment.

(2) For the purposes of sub-paragraph (1) the listed items are—

(a)the assessment of, and the giving of advice to, a patient;

(b)the issuing of a prescription;

(c)a radiographic examination and radiological report;

(d)the dressing of deciduous or permanent teeth and other palliative treatment;

(e)the repair and refixing of inlays, crowns and bridges;

(f)the extraction of deciduous or permanent teeth;

(g)the provision of post-operative care;

(h)the provision of sedation;

(i)the provision, replacement, repair or alteration of dentures or other dental appliances;

(j)urgent treatment for acute conditions of the gingivae or oral mucosa, including treatment for pericoronitis or for ulcers and herpetic lesions, and any necessary oral hygiene instruction in connection with such treatment;

(k)any treatment immediately necessary as a result of trauma;

(l)domiciliary visits and recalled attendance;

(m)conservative treatment of permanent or retained deciduous teeth by way of fillings or root fillings; and

(n)in respect of patients aged under 18, conservative treatment of deciduous teeth.

(3) Where the dentist, due to any cause beyond his control, is unable to complete any course of occasional treatment which he has commenced, he shall forthwith notify the Agency in writing of the extent of the occasional treatment he has provided and the reason he is unable to complete the remainder of the treatment.;

(b)after paragraph 31D (professional indemnity)(1) insert—

Clinical audit activities

31E.(1) In the relevant period a dentist shall—

(a)undertake at least 15 hours of clinical audit activities; and

(b)take reasonable steps to ensure that any assistant of his also undertakes such activities.

(2) In this paragraph—

“clinical audit activities” means activities which involve the systematic and critical analysis of the quality of dental care provided by the dentist, including the processes used by him for diagnosis, intervention and treatment and his use of resources, and may include peer review by means of participation in meetings of a group of not less than 4 dentists where such a group considers the quality and performance of specific treatments and approaches to treatment; and

“the relevant period” means—

(a)

subject to head (b), where a dentist’s name is included in the dental list and he is providing dental services—

(i)

on 1st October 2001, the period of three years commencing on that date,

(ii)

from a date after 1st October 2001, the period of three years commencing with that later date,

and each successive period of three years thereafter;

(b)

where a dentist’s name remains included in the dental list but he does not provide dental services during any continuous period in excess of thirteen weeks, the period specified in head (a), to which is added any such continuous period during which he is not providing dental services.

Quality assurance system

31F.(1) A dentist shall establish, and operate in accordance with this paragraph, a practice based quality assurance system which is applicable to all the persons specified in sub-paragraph (2).

(2) The specified persons are—

(a)the dentist;

(b)any other dentist either employed by him or engaged as a deputy; and

(c)any employee of the dentist other than one falling within head (b).

(3) A dentist shall ensure that in respect of his practice based quality assurance system, he has specified a person (who need not be connected with the dentist’s practice) to be responsible for operating that system.

(4) A dentist shall ensure that in respect of his practice based quality assurance system, there is displayed in a prominent position in his practice premises, in a part to which patients have access, a written statement relating to his commitment to the matters referred to in sub-paragraph (5).

(5) In this paragraph and in paragraph 31G “a practice based quality assurance system” means one which comprises –

(a)a system to ensure that all dental care provided is of a consistent quality;

(b)a system to ensure that effective measures of infection control are used;

(c)a system to ensure that all legal requirements relating to health and safety in the workplace are satisfied;

(d)a system to ensure that all legal requirements relating to radiological protection are satisfied; and

(e)a system to ensure that any requirements of the General Dental Council in respect of the continuing professional development of dentists are satisfied.

Quality assurance system return

31G.(1) Subject to sub-paragraph (3), a dentist whose name is included in the dental list shall provide to the Board by 30th June each year a written return which states—

(a)whether there has been compliance with all the systems specified in paragraph 31F(5) in respect of the period of 12 months ending on 31st March each year; and

(b)whether any changes to his practice or procedures have occurred as a result of the operation of the practice based quality assurance system and if so, the nature of those changes.

(2) Where a dentist practises in partnership with one or more other dentists whose names are included in the dental list, the information referred to in sub-paragraph (1) shall be provided in respect of the partnership as a whole instead of by each dentist individually.

(3) The return to be provided by 30th June 2002 shall relate to the period from 1st October 2001 to 31st March 2002..

(1)

Paragraphs 31A, 31B and 31C were inserted by regulation 2 of S.R. 1996 No. 114 and paragraph 31D was inserted by regulation 5 of S.R. 1998 No. 245

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