Essex Local Dental Committee

Essex Local Dental Committee

Minutes of meeting held 26.10.09. at Chelmsford Golf Club, Chelmsford, Essex.

Hon. Secretary : Tony Clough, Roxwell House, Roxwell, Essex, CM1 4NL

Tel :01245 248553,  e-mail :

Assist. Secretary : Clinton Foreman,

Tel : 07718 900909,  e-mail :

Treasurer : Mark Preston, 90a High St, Canvey Island, Essex SS8 7SQ

Tel : 01268 683739,  e-mail :


Apologies for absence: Clint Foreman.

Minutes of previous meeting: Approved. Signed by Bryan Harvey.

Matters arising: Nil.

Treasurer: Current a/c £24K and reserve a/c £51K. All last 3 years secretarial expenses now paid. Thanks to Bob Davey and Rusi Hodivala for £11154.90 from old Voluntary Fighting Fund. An additional £1346.27 payment was stopped by HSBC from this fighting fund, but has now been paid. No Dentists Health Support or British Dental Guild payments last year.

Chairman : BH welcomed new attendee Baz Liladhar.

Secretarial: AC suggested the LDC consider the BDA benevolent fund as well as Dentists Health Support and British Dental Guild. 3K each? AC to write to NHSBSA to find out how much each PCT receives for LDC payments. Contributions going down at present when they should be going up1.

Incorporation: AC showed a letter that West Essex PCT have sent to all contract holders regarding incorporation. No longer any automatic right to transfer existing contract. The contract would most likely be opened up for tendering. This is partly due to EU contract laws on procurement, and PCTs no longer interpreting incorporation as a "minor change". Attitudes hardening and contract values being driven down by the tendering process.

SHA Audit (Ortho): Spencer Nute followed up his talk at the April LDC meeting. There are difficulties achieving the East of England 18 week target in primary care orthodontics. Hertfordshire PCT has shown £700,000 was spent on discontinued ortho treatment and another £350,000 on multiple ortho assessments in it's area. It is hoping to reduce these costs and wastages with IOTN thresholds and "managed clinical networks". Data from ortho specialists in general practice is proving difficult to obtain. Therefore the PCTs don't know how much extra capacity to buy in to achieve their targets. Kimberley Hall from South West PCT has said the 70% compliance target is not being met. MS wanted to know how many patients are on different practice waiting lists. The backlog needs more personnel. SN said a long term commitment was required by ortho specialists, but PCTs keep going out to tender for extra money / contracts! SN said 3000 patients are on a "notional backlog". MS said £360,000 has been approved by South West PCT. SN said South East PCT has not set up any group to organise dealing with backlog. Assessments are now being paid for resulting in more referrals to hospital service from specialists.

Procurement: Mark Shackell gave an update on the challenges for PCTs who are putting a lot of effort into procurement and dealing with tenders. The money for this comes out of the dental pot. There is now a strict format for tendering and tenders are analysed by software on an "E Bravo" platform. There is also a guidance booklet "PCT powers in relation to contractual changes" which he recommends reading. Service specifications for endodontics and periodontics are also being developed - there are currently gaps in commissioning in these areas. Bob Davey said that in South West PCT the money for access was being spent on capital projects. A McKinsey central booking scheme involving phoning patients has been a failure with money wasted. Reg Patel said he couldn't see how dentists could make a reasonable profit from recently awarded contracts.

High needs - multi-band: AC said that this was an initiative from Birmingham PCT. The CDO has stated there should be no need for extra funding and that treatment should be staged. MS said high needs will be dealt with by "Steele". Adam Copsey (PCT dental adviser amongst other things) gets letters from associates asking for extra funding / UDAs for extensive treatments. Bryan Harvey said it was important to get the paperwork right for extensive staged treatments.

Honoraria and PAYE: AC said that LMCs are currently being chased by HMRC according to his accountant. It will probably be necessary to start operating a PAYE scheme for payments to LDC officials.

PCT Performance Monitoring: AC said LDCs input is required as stakeholders. Online feedback on "World Class Commissioning" eg. North East PCT is holding connect events. South East PCT has an online survey.

Swine Flu: MS said that GDPs and nurses are in priority group 2 for vaccines. Receptionists and cleaners have no priority. Letters are being distributed. You have a responsibility to protect vulnerable groups. The vaccine is to be obtained via occupational health not via GPs. AC said so far PCT responses have been variable regarding vaccination, but there is no disputing the fact that dentists are exposed to a high level of close contact with the general public. South Staffs PCT has sent out letters insisting their dentists are vaccinated. BH said it sounds like we are being dictated to.

Steele + Clinical Effectiveness Group + Warburton: There is a future that will involve KPIs (Key Performance Indicators), "Vital Signs" and PCTs putting dentists in front of assessment panels. Validated data and tough interpretation attitude. Hennie Van de Merwe (Brentwood) said that a Neil Bisley (South West) was checking dental practices wrt clawbacks and had a list of individual patients for auditing and spot checks. AC said that 0.25% of claims were investigated.

Elections: AC said Essex LDC now has a new constitution and elections are now overdue. Need to sort out who is eligible to vote, so that letters to electors can be sent. PCT help will be required to get a bona fide electoral roll. This may help establish who is and isn't currently contributing to the LDC levy.

Meeting of Eastern Region LDC Secretaries: This was attended by Clint Foreman on 21st July 2009. Further details available on the website. Norfolk LDC is now funded by a £0.00119 per £1 levy on all PCT dental contracts.

iForms : BH said that iForms for medical history with electronic signatures and integration with SoE and Kodak are being developed. Look out for these at the upcoming BDTA exhibition.

Next meeting: Monday 7th December.


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