People have been telling me about difficulties in finding an NHS dentist for months.
It is shocking that there appear to be no dentists in Bristol West accepting new NHS patients. Some dentists such as the one in St Paul’s are closing altogether. As a result, many people no longer have access to an NHS dentist.
I’ve taken this up with the local NHS and with government ministers. Locally the NHS is setting up some emergency provision but it’s nowhere near enough. The real problem lies with the government.
Years of Tory mismanagement led to dentists leaving the NHS in droves. I’ve urged the Health Secretary to intervene and address the crisis in Bristol’s dental services.
What you can do in the interim:
- If you have an urgent dental need you can access additional urgent dental care appointments by calling NHS111. Please note that there are only 64 appointments each week in the Bristol North Somerset South Gloucestershire (BNSSG) area.
- There are 13 sessions of Stabilisation per week across BNSSG, equating to about 65 appointments providing a more permanent solution to a dental problem. This is for people requiring urgent care treatment (e.g., broken teeth, broken fillings) that don’t currently have an NHS dentist.
- There is a dental helpline that patients can access via NHS111.