British Dental Conference & Dentistry Show Day 2 – plus one absentee

A day that seemed less rammed than yesterday but was still busy enough. The competing attractions of sunshine, the FA cup final and a certain high profile wedding didn’t significantly deter the delegates. Indeed some were tuned in to the Windsor nuptials – here are the BACD royalists.

(Some of) the lawyers, sales agents and accountants reported they had experienced a busy day so the sales / purchases market remains buoyant.

Today the freebie grabbers were out in force, many queueing for 40 minutes or more for a “free” toothbrush. Hey ho I am not complaining or criticising. They were there, possibly brought by their practice principal or manager and that’s important. There were thousands of practices unrepresented, whose owners and teams exist in their silos with little or no communication and experience of the greater world of dentistry.

A mention for the busiest looking stand, TePe, where the team were going flat out from start to finish. Their team, many of whom have other “day jobs” as dental nurses or dental hygienists made my day of networking seem very laid back indeed. I know others were probably equally busy but TePe were very visible, situated as they were hard by the entrance.

The discussion about the new NHS contracts which was facilitated by Nigel Jones of Practice Plan and featured Eddie Crouch, Tony Kilcoyne and Henrik Overgaard Nielsen was interesting, if only for the clear disregard that the UK government shows for the dental health of its constituency. This of course is reflected in the way it behaves towards dentistry. The story is one of no commitment to the NHS and the can being kicked down the road and well into the long grass. At one point will the profession refuse to take lower and lower rewards for providing n increasingly challenging and over regulated service?

Certainly the BDA hierarchy were happy with the event and I’m pleased about that, they took quite a risk if only of reputation by getting involved.

One notable absentee from the stands at the NEC was {my}Dentist. At one time they would have had a significant presence where it seemed they wanted to buy any and every practice, they were recruiting from home and abroad and embarking on a march to dominate UK dentistry. Now with tales of contracts  returned unfulfilled, practices being sold and wholesale challenges with attracting and keeping dentists their star appears to be (slightly) on the wane. No matter how many hubs and spokes you have it’s not always easy to keep the wheels on the wagon.

Rodericks, BUPA & Collosseum Dental (who thought that one up?) all had a presence.

Unless that career involves practice ownership I presume…

British Dental Conference & Dentistry Show Day 1

Firstly let me get this comment out of the way, it is not and probably will never be a substitute for the BDA conference. Done.

The numbers were high. When I arrived from the airport at 9.05 the queue to print tickets looked daunting but the stewards kept it organised and the ticket machines were straightforward to use so the wait was minimal.

Every year brings a glut of new businesses to shows and, unsurprisingly, this year’s were those selling GDPR compliance packages. On May 25th the sky will not fall in in the same way that the “Millennium bug” did not bring civilisation crashing down. Last GDPR mention, I promise.

At first glance the lecture theatres were well placed and isolated from the main exhibition hall. There was little or no sound leakage to distract from the content. Less ideal were the theatres situated within the hall, it was clear that anyone doing three or four presentations over the two days would be left with a sore larynx by Saturday afternoon.

One of the justified complaints from the people who pay to make these events happen, the dental industry, is that delegates who come to attend the academic elements don’t visit their stands – with this set up it would be impossible to ignore the goods and services on display.

It was good to see the numbers of Foundation Dentists and Students in attendance something that Closer Still hadn’t welcomed in the past apparently because they weren’t responsible for making or influencing purchases.

No hordes of freebie hunters either.

A very good first day.

%d bloggers like this: