Dental registrations rise

Almost 90 per cent of Borders children are now registered with an NHS dentist according to recently published figures.

And with 68.5 per cent of adults in the region also registered with NHS dentists it shows a marked improvement on last year’s figures.

The region has been way behind the Scottish average when it came to being registered with an NHS dentist, with only 66% of the population last year having been able to do so, but latest figures show the gap is closing

As well as 68.5% of adults and 89.5% of children in the Borders registered with NHS dentists in the Borders, a further 11,800 patients (10.5%) have opted to see private independent dentists.

The national dental registration average is 79.9% for adults and 89.5% for children.

However, Marion Wood, NHS Borders clinical service manager for primary and community services, points out that these figures do not show the whole picture.

“The recent figures published do not include the patients under the care of community dental officers figures which equates to 2,800 patients around an additional 2.7%,” she said.

“Our community dental officers visits patients in care homes, residential homes and at home as part of the regular service to the community.

“This service caters mostly for frail elderly patients, patients of all ages with additional needs and patients who have complex behaviours which need special care. The work carried out by this service is not recognised in the figures published, making the figures appear lower than they are.”