“Jump” said industry. “How high?” asks the department.

As I understand it independent means, “free from control in action, judgement, etc.; autonomous”. The role of independent advisers, in this case academics, (funny how that word can seem derogatory) is surely to provide balance to those with an agenda (declared or otherwise) so that decisions can not only be taken but also seen to be taken for the right reason, the health of the patient. However the silver haired, silver tongued, seemingly Teflon coated Mr Lansley is, like many of his predecessors, set to dabble because he can. So that’s GMC, GDC & now NICE that have gone for orchidectomy.

This from Pulse.

NICE appraisals process to become more ‘political’ after industry pressure by Jaimie Kaffash | 20 Aug 2012

Exclusive: The Department of Health has bowed to industry pressure to make the NICE appraisal process more ‘politically accountable’ and is set to remove the institute’s power to appoint its own appeal committee and hand it to ministers.

Pulse has learnt that the Department of Health is set to table secondary legislation under the Health and Social Care Act so that the health secretary will personally approve all appointments to the panel of experts that consider appeals from drugs companies against NICE appraisals of drugs.
The chair of the appraisal appeal panel will also have to be ‘someone from outside NICE’.
The move comes after the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry wrote to the health secretary in June urging him to revamp the appraisal procedure so independent academics had less say.
Seen by Pulse, the APBI letter reads: ‘Policy is made a long way from political accountability and the NICE Executive appears to have no remit or desire to challenge the decisions of independent academics.’
‘The burden of proof is currently absolutely on industry and academic purity can override pragmatism.’
A DH spokesperson confirmed that there will be changes to the composition of appeals panels ‘to give stakeholders more confidence in its independence’.
He said: ‘First, the chair and majority of members of an appeal panel will be appointed from outside NICE. This is a change from the current arrangements where the panel is chaired by a NICE non-executive director.
‘Second, appeal panel appointments will in future need to be agreed by the secretary of state.’
However, there are no plans to broaden the grounds for NICE appraisal appeals, the spokesperson added.
The move comes after health secretary Andrew Lansley revealed NICE would no longer have the power to make ‘yes’ or ‘no’ decisions on access to drugs from 2014, with the Department of Health setting the maximum price the NHS will pay for new medicines.
Sir Andrew Dillon, the chief executive of NICE, said:‘These changes, which we are aware of, underline the independence of the existing appeal process and will enable NICE to draw on a larger pool of qualified and experienced panel members.’
But Dr David Jenner, GMS/PMS contract lead at the NHS Alliance and a GP in Cullompton, Devon said: ‘If they are political appointees that risks NICE being seen as an agent of Government.’

Gordon Christensen returns to Gloucestershire

Gloucestershire Independent Dentists

Dr Gordon Christensen – New Aspects of Dentistry

Saturday 13th October 2012 (Registration 9.00am), Gold Cup Suite, Cheltenham Racecourse

This fast moving course includes the areas of dentistry with the most activity and change in any given year. It is easily understood and has numerous summaries that help attendees to interpret the ongoing advancements in the profession. The course encourages audience participation, and questions and answers and is presented in an enjoyable and humorous manner.

“Where he goes, they follow. When he speaks, they listen. He is the bottom line. He is Gordon Christensen”

The New Aspects of Dentistry course will cover the areas in dentistry with the most activity and change in 2012. The hottest aspects in a wide range of topics will be included in the planned program, and delegates will receive 7 verifiable CPD hours.

Just some of the topics to be covered:

  • Diagnosis and Treatment Planning
  • Prosthodontics Fixed
  • Prosthodontics Removable
  • Technology
  • Preventive Dentistry
  • Equipment
  • Periodontics
  • Operative Dentistry
  • Endodontics
  • Aesthetic Dentistry
  • Implant Dentistry
  • Lasers
  • Infection Control

At the end of the course, delegates will be able to list the most important and useful new techniques, concepts and materials to implement into practice.

Gordon J. Christensen DDS MSD PhD

Gordon J. Christensen is Founder and Director of Practical Clinical Courses (PCC) and Chief Executive Officer of Clinicians Report Foundation (CR) in Provo, Utah. He has presented over 45,000 hours of continuing education throughout the world and has published many articles and books.

Gordon and Dr. Rella Christensen are co-founders of the non-profit Clinicians Report Foundation (previously CRA), which Rella directed for many years. Since 1976, they have conducted research in all areas of dentistry and published the findings to the profession in the well-known CRA Newsletter now called Clinicians Report

Gordon’s degrees include: DDS, University of Southern California; MSD, University of Washington; PhD, University of Denver; an Honorary Doctor of Science from Utah State University, and an honorary Doctor of Dental Education and Research from Utah Valley University. Early in his career, Gordon helped initiate the University of Kentucky and University of Colorado Dental Schools and taught at the University of Washington. Gordon is a practicing prosthodontist in Provo, Utah.

Includes refreshments, two course lunch and trade fair.

Course fee £275.00
Non GID Team members £75
Limited place numbers, please apply early to guarantee a place.

Please send your details and cheque made payable to ‘Gloucestershire Independent Dentists’ to

Mr M. Smith, Secretary, 24 Moorend Park Road, Cheltenham, Glos. GL53 0JY

Enquiries: Call Mark Smith on 07766 878356


Report reveals deep decay to dentists’ pay, says BDA

22 August, 2012

Report reveals deep decay to dentists’ pay, says BDA

Dentists in England and Wales are earning significantly less and paying more in essential costs and expenses than three years ago, according to new figures published by the NHS Information Centre today.

The British Dental Association (BDA) says the report, Dental Earnings and Expenses, England and Wales, 2010/11, shows a fall in dentists’ average taxable income for the second year running, while the costs of providing premises, equipment, staff and materials essential to patient care have spiralled upwards.

The average taxable income for all self-employed primary care dentists in England and Wales in 2010/11 was £77,900, compared to £84,900 in 2009/10 and £89,600 in 2008/09.

This represents a pay cut of 13 per cent over two years and is coupled with increases in practice expenses of five per cent for the same period, and comes on top of expense increases of nearly eight per cent between 2007/8 and 2008/09.

Dr John Milne, Chair of the BDA’s General Dental Practice Committee, said:

“We have been telling the Department of Health for some time that the dental profession is suffering a pay cut rather than a pay freeze, which could jeopardise the resources high street dentists need to provide the best quality care to patients.

“Dentists in England and Wales are working hard to deliver the quality of care expected by patients and the profession, but are contending with greater bureaucracy and escalating costs against a backdrop of efficiency savings in the NHS.”

The report is available on the Department of Health website.


Notes to editors

The British Dental Association (BDA) is the professional association for dentists in the UK. It represents 23,000 dentists working in general practice, in community and hospital settings, in academia and research, and in the armed forces, and includes dental students.
For further information, please contact the BDA’s media team on 0207 563 4145/46 or visit www.bda.org/news-centre/. You can also follow news from the BDA on Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/TheBDA.

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