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National Health Service (Wales) Act 2006

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

General dental services contracts

57General dental services contracts: introductory

(1)A Local Health Board may enter into a contract under which primary dental services are provided in accordance with the following provisions of this Part.

(2)A contract under this section is called in this Act a “general dental services contract”.

(3)A general dental services contract may make such provision as may be agreed between the Local Health Board and the contractor in relation to—

(a)the services to be provided under the contract (which may include services which are not primary dental services),

(b)remuneration under the contract, and

(c)any other matters.

(4)In this Part, “contractor”, in relation to a general dental services contract, means any person entering into the contract with the Local Health Board.

58Requirement to provide certain primary dental services

(1)A general dental services contract must require the contractor or contractors to provide, for his or their patients, primary dental services of such descriptions as may be prescribed.

(2)Regulations under subsection (1) may in particular describe services by reference to the manner or circumstances in which they are provided.

59Persons eligible to enter into GDS contracts

(1)A Local Health Board may, subject to such conditions as may be prescribed, enter into a general dental services contract with—

(a)a dental practitioner,

(b)a dental corporation,

(c)two or more individuals practising in partnership where the conditions in subsection (2) are satisfied.

(2)The conditions referred to in subsection (1)(c) are that—

(a)at least one partner is a dental practitioner, and

(b)any partner who is not a dental practitioner is either—

(i)an NHS employee,

(ii)a section 50 employee, section 64 employee, section 92 employee, section 107 employee, section 17C employee or Article 15B employee,

(iii)a health care professional who is engaged in the provision of services under this Act or the National Health Service Act 2006 (c. 41), or

(iv)an individual falling within section 51(1)(d).

(3)Regulations may make provision as to the effect, in relation to a general dental services contract entered into by individuals practising in partnership, of a change in the membership of the partnership.

(4)In this section—

  • “dental corporation” means a body corporate which is carrying on the business of dentistry in accordance with the Dentists Act 1984 (c. 24),

  • “health care professional”, “NHS employee”, “section 50 employee”, “section 64 employee”, “section 92 employee”, “section 107 employee”, “section 17C employee” and “Article 15B employee” have the meaning given by section 65.

60GDS contracts: payments

(1)The Welsh Ministers may give directions as to payments to be made under general dental services contracts.

(2)A general dental services contract must require payments to be made under the contract in accordance with directions under this section.

(3)A direction under subsection (1) may in particular—

(a)provide for payments to be made by reference to compliance with standards or the achievement of levels of performance,

(b)provide for payments to be made by reference to—

(i)any scheme or scale specified in the direction, or

(ii)a determination made by any person in accordance with factors specified in the direction,

(c)provide for the making of payments in respect of individual practitioners,

(d)provide that the whole or any part of a payment is subject to conditions (and may provide that payments are payable by a Local Health Board only if it is satisfied as to certain conditions),

(e)make provision having effect from a date before the date of the direction, provided that, having regard to the direction as a whole, the provision is not detrimental to the persons to whose remuneration it relates.

(4)Before giving a direction under subsection (1), the Welsh Ministers—

(a)must consult any body appearing to them to be representative of persons to whose remuneration the direction would relate, and

(b)may consult such other persons as they consider appropriate.

(5)“Payments” includes fees, allowances, reimbursements, loans and repayments.

61GDS contracts: other required terms

(1)A general dental services contract must contain such provision as may be prescribed (in addition to the provision required by the preceding provisions of this Part).

(2)Regulations under subsection (1) may in particular make provision as to—

(a)the manner in which, and standards to which, services must be provided,

(b)the persons who perform services,

(c)the persons to whom services will be provided,

(d)the variation of contract terms (other than terms required by or under this Part),

(e)rights of entry and inspection (including inspection of clinical records and other documents),

(f)the circumstances in which, and the manner in which, the contract may be terminated,

(g)enforcement,

(h)the adjudication of disputes.

(3)Regulations under subsection (2)(d) may make provision as to the circumstances in which a Local Health Board may impose a variation of contract terms.

(4)Regulations under subsection (1) must make provision as to the right of patients to choose the persons from whom they receive services.

62GDS contracts: disputes and enforcement

(1)Regulations may make provision for the resolution of disputes as to the terms of a proposed general dental services contract.

(2)Regulations under subsection (1) may make provision—

(a)for the referral of the terms of the proposed contract to the Welsh Ministers, and

(b)for the Welsh Ministers, or a person appointed by them, to determine the terms on which the contract may be entered into.

(3)Regulations may make provision for a person or persons entering into a general dental services contract to be regarded as a health service body for any purposes of section 7, in circumstances where he or they so elect.

(4)Regulations under subsection (3) may include provision as to the application of section 7 in cases where—

(a)persons practising in partnership elect to become a health service body, and

(b)there is a change in the membership of the partnership.

(5)Where—

(a)by virtue of regulations under subsection (3), section 7(11) applies in relation to a general dental services contract, and

(b)a direction as to payments is made under that provision in relation to the contract,

the direction is enforceable in a county court (if the court so orders) as if it were a judgment or order of that court.

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