Sinn Féin MLA Colm Gildernew has called on the Health Minister to take urgent action to ensure dentists have appropriate PPE in order to treat patients.
Colm Gildernew said:
“It is extremely disappointing that this situation has developed with NHS dentists unable to treat their patients due to the lack of PPE equipment needed for various procedures.
“Regrettably, the Department of Health has failed to heed the numerous warnings from dental professionals and associations who have been highlighting the gravity of this situation for months now.
“In addition, private dental practices are experiencing problems accessing much-needed PPE and as a result, patients are being required to pay extra for the equipment used during their procedures.
“This situation is creating another health inequality where patients who can afford to pay will receive treatment, while those of lower income, who already experience significant oral health inequality, will go untreated.
“The Minister and the Department of Health must address this crisis in NHS dentistry immediately. I have written to the Minister to ask that he address the shortage of PPE for dental practices as a matter of urgency.”