BDA says enough is enough

The British Dental Association has been criticised for its lack of resistance to the recent impositions of HTM01-05 and the Care Quality Commission. In the past couple of days they have issed the following statement and have done a U-turn on making the advice package available free of charge to members, (it was originally going to priced at £75).

Although frequently accused of not listening to its members I have some sympathy for their position as there appears to be as many different views as there are members – all of whom consider themselves to be correct.

The CQC must explain calculations behind proposed fee scale to register dental practices warns BDA
The British Dental Association is calling on the Care Quality Commission to explain the calculations behind its proposed fee scale to register dental practices, following concerns that single practice owners could end up subsidising owners of larger practices.

With registration fees for one practice proposed to start at £1,500, the sliding scale means that the more practices a provider owns, the cheaper the unit cost, despite the CQC’s assertion that the cost of registration would be linked directly to providers’ responsibility for meeting the essential standards.  The CQC’s consultation on registration fees for dental practices gives no indication of the actual cost to CQC of regulating dental practices.

In a letter addressed to the CQC’s Chief Executive, Cynthia Bower, the BDA asks her to explain the details underpinning the proposed fees.
Susie Sanderson, Chair of the BDA’s Executive Board, said:
“The profession has already expressed grave concerns over the Commission’s regulation of dental services and the poor handling of the registration process.  The lack of clarity over how the proposed fee scale was calculated will do nothing to allay these concerns.
“In the first instance, how did the CQC calculate that the minimum fee to register a practice annually should be £1,500, when the fee to register a practice in the equivalent body in Wales is under £100?
“And how can it be equitable that a large number of small providers will effectively subsidise the smaller number of large providers, whether NHS Trusts or chains of practices?”

John Milne, Chair of the BDA’s General Dental Practice Committee, said:
“If the CQC is genuinely interested in feedback from dentists on its proposed fee scale, then it must explain how it calculated it, otherwise this is a pointless exercise and will only further erode the profession’s confidence in a regulation process which seems unnecessary.”

BDA supports members with CQC compliance

The BDA has today announced that it is making available free of charge online to members its dedicated toolkit helping members comply with the CQC requirements.

The toolkit is a value-added product.  It contains not only guidance on how to complete the application form and how to comply with the requirements – which is already free on the website and has been accessed by many members over the past few months – but also over 40 BDA-approved models, protocols and templates to smooth the process.  Part of our ongoing support and advice for members, the kit enables us to get this critical and practical information to the large number of members who have asked us for it.  The toolkit CD-Rom was originally priced at just £75 for members, with a non-member price of £520 more accurately reflecting its commercial value.  The many members who have already paid for a copy will receive a full refund.

The kit is the latest in the BDA’s well-known series of practice aids that are ordinarily available for members to buy. But in this case it will be available on the website by the end of next week at no cost until the end of the registration period at the end of March 2011.

Commenting on the decision to offer such a comprehensive level of support free, BDA Chief Executive Peter Ward said “The BDA has lobbied government consistently that the way CQC regulation is being implemented is plain wrong, being disproportionate, draconian and chaotic.  We will continue to fight for change and are enlisting the support of our members to help by sending a postcard to their MPs asking the Secretary of State to act.  The postcard will be distributed in the December issue of BDA News.

“The fact is though that members do have to comply with these unreasonable demands until change is won and accordingly we have developed a reliable toolkit that will be available to all to help them do so.  The demands of CQC are almost unprecedented in recent times and the BDA has responded rapidly by devoting significant time and expertise in delivering a product that will protect members from some of the unnecessary pressure CQC compliance entails.”

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