Do you work with vulnerable people?

Are they able to access dental services?

Within the Alliance, there is a team leading some research on accessing dentistry services. They are keen to involve the whole Alliance as each member represents a wide range of people who are highly likely to be using special care dental services, or understand the challenges of using high street dental practices as users’ needs are complex.

The purpose of the project is to build meaningful public engagement around the procurement of special care dental services. NHS England understands that public engagement is important as we need to know what matters most to users. NHS commissioners are working together to plan the commissioning of these services across the South of England.


  • ‘Special Care’ and ‘Paediatrics’ are two specialities of dentistry and are usually provided by the same service. This service is aimed at children and adults whose needs are too complex to be treated by a high street dentist.
  • Special care dentistry refers to adult dentistry where the patients themselves are complex, but the dentistry is not.
  • Paediatric dentistry refers to children up to age 16 where either the patient or the dentistry can be complex.
  • Staff working in special care dental services usually have additional formal qualifications and enhanced skills.

Over next 18 months or so, the team will help the NHS to decide:

  • Where the services should be
  • How much capacity we need
  • What a ‘good’ service looks like

They are seeking feedback over a period of three weeks until 28th January 2019. There are just three questions and you can access the survey here