ADG Chair Welcomes “Armed Forces Style” Recruitment

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ADG Chair Neil Carmichael welcomes armed forces style campaign to recruit more people into healthcare careers

Neil Carmichael, Chair of the Association of Dental Groups (ADG) has added his support to recommendations from a new report published today (30-4-2021) calling for a well-funded “Armed Forces” style recruitment campaign to inform and encourage people into the full range of healthcare careers, including dentistry.

The report also recommends that the Government’s central funds for “levelling up” should include a role for healthcare to reduce the nation’s regional health disparities.

Last month the publication of Public Health England’s report on “Oral health inequalities in England” revealed stark variations in oral health between regions and highlights an emerging “north/south” divide. Lying behind these inequalities is a growing recruitment crisis in those parts of the country that need NHS dentistry the most.

In its 30 Years of Hurt Report the ADG has already called for an increase in the number of UK training places for dentists, and urged incentives for NHS dentists to move to areas with poorer access to dentistry such as Yorkshire and Lincolnshire coastlines, but also the South coast around the Isle of Wight, Portsmouth and Cornwall.

In the short term, overseas recruitment which makes up nearly a fifth of registered dentists, and mutual recognition of qualifications of overseas dentists should be streamlined.

Neil Carmichael added: “The Government has recognised the need to recruit more doctors and nurses, but we need more than this. As the NHS integrates its care systems a long-term workforce plan for the whole healthcare workforce is required; this report makes a strong case for a recruitment strategy.

“NHS dentistry provision is suffering from acute recruitment problems in many areas of the country that the Government wishes to level up. Good health enables people to participate fully in society and must be a part of that ‘levelling up’ process. A national recruitment drive for the whole sector highlighting the opportunities in many parts of the country for those who want to make a difference must be part of delivering this.”