17.4.20 Update on dental services
This is the latest guidance for dental services:
During the COVID-19 pandemic all routine, non-urgent NHS and private dentistry has stopped. Patients who have scheduled appointments in the coming weeks will have been contacted by their dental practice.
The NHS is continuing to provide urgent and emergency dental care. This is available to both NHS and private patients. If patients have a dental emergency they should:
- Call the dental practice they normally attend during their opening hours for further advice – this could be a NHS dentist or a private dentist
- If they do not have a regular dentist or cannot access their dentist, they can search for a local dentist on the NHS website at www.nhs.uk and call them.
- Alternatively they can contact NHS 111 who will provide advice and refer to an NHS dentist if necessary. In the evenings and weekends, patients can be directed to an out of hours service.
When patients call a dental practice, a member of the team will carry out a telephone assessment to assess their dental needs. They will be able to offer advice or prescribe medication to relieve any pain or to treat an infection.
If a patient requires urgent dental treatment, the dental practice will refer them to an urgent dental care hub. This will be for a booked appointment. Patients can only access urgent dental care hubs in this way – patients cannot make a self-referral, walk-in or be referred directly by NHS 111 or Hospital Emergency Departments.
If a patient attends a hospital Emergency Department and is not a medical emergency but requires urgent dental treatment, they should be advised to contact a local NHS dentist.
Urgent dental care hubs have been established across Hampshire and Isle of Wight. Designated hubs have been established for vulnerable people and those at highest risk from COVID-19 and are shielding.