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NHS Dentistry
    This is quite an area of discussion because of recent changes. First, a little story.

    CB has a friend who had been with the same dentist for 30 years. It was a prominent city centre dentists practice. The partner who he saw was a lady with very distinguished qualifications, including a 38 double D rack on her chest. Whilst at work, this partner never wore a bra under her white coat. When she was bent over you doing your teeth, and you were staring down that ample cleavage, it was impossible to feel any pain. Sadly, she was a lady of integrity. She said she would retire at the age of 50, and she kept her word. Her replacement was another lady, not so well endowed, but newly qualified from college to the highest standard. The lady was au fait with the latest techniques and was so gentle with injections that, again, you felt no pain. All was well until the powers that be varied the dentists contract. The above practice opted out of the NHS, leaving CB's friend having to change dentists.

    Years ago, if you changed dentists, the new dentist insisted on ripping out all your old fillings "to ensure the soundness of your teeth under the metal". Really, it was to claim the payment from the NHS, regardless of your discomfort, or any professional respect for the work done by the previous practitioner. This practice was eventually stopped. The new dental contract awards the NHS dentist "points" for work done and he has to make so many points in the year, according to CB's information, to begin earning money. So, CB's pal found a new dentist. The new guy advised CB's pal that he had periodontitis, which is a gum disease. Periodontitis is preceded by the onset of gingivitis, and is the second stage of the disease, the third being the eventual falling out of your teeth. The treatment is to peel back your gums from your teeth and scrape the tooth under the gum line, very distressful and with much pain. CB's pal contacted his old dentist to ask why he had never been treated for this and was told because he didn't have it. CB's pal cancelled his appointment for the first of these treatments and so is now, presumably, without a dentist. If he gets another one, he will probably meet with the same diagnosis, so he isn't going to bother until he needs a dentist, at which time he will find out where he stands.

    The dimwits who are responsible for the new changes seem impervious to the needs of the patient. There is also a question of contract involved here. CB is not a lawyer but lets think about this. When you first start work, you have to pay national insurance. There is no choice, it is compulsory. At that point, surely, a contract is established between you and the government, who administer national insurance. In England, once a contract is in force, it cannot be varied without the consent of both parties. So, if the minions make any changes, surely those changes can only apply to the people that join the scheme after the changes. Those already with a contract should not be affected by the changes, and if they are, surely the government are in breach of that contract. Now, this could work against you, but history shows that changes take away from you and never seem to give you anything. CB invites comment via the feedback page from professionals who know contract law on the above thoughts.    

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