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Local recruitment crisis for dentists in east Suffolk

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A local recruitment crisis for dentists coupled with a poor deal in NHS contracts has resulted in a shortage of appointments in east Suffolk, health leaders have said.

Suffolk and Norfolk dentists exposed the extent of the problem at a meeting of East Suffolk Council’s scrutiny committee on Thursday night, in which it was highlighted that it was “not unusual in our region of the country to have unfilled vacancies for over two years”.

The issue had been brought to the committee for discussion by Kirkley and Pakefield ward councillor Louise Gooch, who has experienced problems since the closure of Ferns and Yaxley on Kirkley Cliff Road.

East Suffolk Council discussed the issue at a meeting of their scrutiny committee. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Paul Rolfe, secretary of the Suffolk Local Dental Committee, said that the region did not have a dental school which made recruitment difficult.

“The difficulty with dentistry is you tend to either work where you qualify or where you are from, and there aren’t many people from the east of England going to dental school,” he said.

“As a result, we are not training enough people in the region who will want to come back.”

The committee heard that the region has historically relied on European and New Zealand dentists, but this had become more difficult as a result of Brexit and........

© Eastern Daily Press

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