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Saturday, January 30, 1999 Published at 02:35 GMT


Dentists eyeing private sector

Little confidence in future of dentistry on NHS

Young dentists are turning their backs on working for the National Health Service in favour of private work.

A survey by the British Dental Association found that more than a third of dentists who qualified after 1987 said they would like to work for a company like chemists Boots or another corporate body.

The BDA found that 70% of dentists surveyed said they would at least like to have the option of becoming salaried employees of a company chain.

The survey comes at a time when dentists are increasingly opting to go private, saying that they can not give NHS patients good care for the money the government pays.

While nine out of 10 are confident about the future of private practice, only 16% thought there was a future in the dentistry in the Health Service.

"In the future young dentists see dentistry moving away from single-handed practices to larger ones with a varied mix of skills," said Dr Len D'Cruz, chairman of the BDA's Young Dentists Sub-Committee.

More than 1,000 dentists who qualified after 1987 were interviewed, making it the largest survey of young dentists ever conducted.

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