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NHS answer back

PUBLISHED: 13:01 11 September 2009 | UPDATED: 12:04 06 July 2010

FOLLOWING last week's Journal article and the Postbox section of the newspaper, I felt I should write to confirm NHS Great Yarmouth and Waveney's (NHS GYW) position regarding the High Street Dental Surgery, in Lowestoft.

FOLLOWING last week's Journal article and the Postbox section of the newspaper, I felt I should write to confirm NHS Great Yarmouth and Waveney's (NHS GYW) position regarding the High Street Dental Surgery, in Lowestoft.

I cannot go into details regarding the contract the Primary Care Trust (PCT) has with David Johnson because this information is confidential. However, as confirmed in our statement to The Journal, there has been a dispute with Dr Johnson and this dispute has been referred to an independent adjudicator. During the dispute the bidding process for this contract will continue.

I would like to reassure the community that whatever the outcome of the bidding process, all patients currently on Dr Johnson's list of dental practitioners will continue to be able to receive NHS dental care locally. There will be no loss of provision of NHS dental services in the Lowestoft area.

The PCT is required to provide dental care for the 230,000 people who live in the area. We do this by agreeing contracts with individual practices to ensure families in Great Yarmouth and Waveney have the best possible dental care.

In addition to the High Street Dental Surgery, in Lowestoft, there are seven other NHS dental practices in Lowestoft and Oulton Broad providing general dental services; five of these are currently taking on new NHS patients.

The access levels to NHS dentistry for this area are the highest in the East of England and among the highest in England.

Over the past 12 months the PCT has invested £1.4m in dental care across the area so everyone living in Great Yarmouth and Waveney has the best access to NHS dental care.

NHS GYW has increased capacity at the Corton Road practice in Lowestoft and the Crown Road surgery, in Great Yarmouth. A new orthodontic specialist has also been employed to benefit patients across the area and last month a new dental practice opened in Southwold.

If anyone is currently experiencing difficulty accessing NHS dentistry they should contact the PCT on 01502 719501 where they will be advised of NHS practices currently taking on NHS patients.

PAUL ZOLLINGER-READ

Interim chief executive

NHS Great Yarmouth and Waveney

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