Dentists are asking for five additional services at the NHS

Dentists are asking for five additional services at the NHS, support from the Parliament's Health Committee

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Five additional dental services, in the already offered framework of dental services of the General Health System, are requested by the Dentists, who on Thursday discussed and filed a relevant memorandum before the Health Committee of the Parliament.

Specifically, they are asking for two cleanings (cleanings) per year, an increase in the fee unit, fluoridation until the age of 18, dentists' access to the patients' history and the inclusion of two posterior alveolar or posterior molar x-rays every 2 years.

As the President of the Pancypriot Dental Association, Antonis Antoniou, said during the meeting, the five requests are "fully justified", since according to data released by the Health Insurance Organization, only 1/3 of the dental budget was rejected in 2022.

For their part, the members of the Parliamentary Health Committee support the specific requests and intend to send a letter to the OAU requesting a quick examination of the specific requests.

According to the President of the Pancypriot Dental Association, the GeSY Group of the Association has already carried out a preliminary round of contacts with the political parties, while the General Assembly of the Association authorized the GeSY group to request the inclusion of the five requests in the already offered framework of dental services of the General Health System.

Regarding the increase in the fee unit, Mr. Antoniou said that they consider that the fee of 38,40 euros (2 units of 19,20 euros) received by dentists for cleaning "is unacceptably low and it should at least reach the 45 euros.

Also, regarding the two discharges per year, he said that as it appears from the data that the Health Insurance Organization made public, there is financial opportunity for proper dental prevention, since the budget was an obstacle from the beginning.

Regarding fluoridation up to the age of 18, he said that their request is again based on financial ability. It is noted that currently fluoridation is limited to once a year for children aged 6 to 12 years.

Regarding Dentists' access to patients' history, Mr. Antoniou said that "it is a purely scientific requirement", so that dentists can be surprised every day.

Regarding the inclusion of the two x-rays, he said that it could be very useful preventively and diagnostically, at very little cost to the NHS.

The President of the Health Committee, Efthymios Diplaros, spoke of "fair requests", to add that the members of his Committee have seen with a "very positive lens" the fact that the Association removed the panoramic examinations from the requests to the OAU, which would cost and increase the budget.

He appealed to the OAU to quickly respond to the memorandum with the requests of the Pancypriot Dental Association, so that a meeting can be set and these services can finally join the NHS.

"The goal of all the requests of the Pancypriot Dental Association - and this is what we will record in our letter to the OAU asking for a quick examination of the requests - is prevention," said Mr. Diplaros.

He also said that "the complaint" of the Dental Association which the Commission received is that the OAU "saw purely accounting" all these requests.

According to Mr. Diplaros "the OAU should not act with this logic in these requests, but contrary to the logic of prevention, since at the end of the day you may save human lives and hundreds of thousands of euros from the treatment that a patient may need without prevention".

DIKO Member of Parliament, Chrysanthos Savvidis, said in his turn that "physical health begins with oral health", noting that his party supports the Pancypriot Dental Association.

He expressed the hope that OAU will become a helper in the Association's effort.

The MP of DIPA, Michalis Giakoumis, said that oral health is an integral part of general good health and requires daily and quality mouth care.

"Prevention is the alpha and the omega and the club's requests are in this direction," he noted.