Dental recovery plan: Health minister’s ‘high likelihood’ remark sparks criticism

The government’s 200 million dental recovery plan has come under fierce criticism from the opposition party after health minister Dame Andrea Leadsom
admitted that there is a “high likelihood” that it will not deliver 2.5 million dental appointments.

Published last month, the plan is aimed at ensuring easier and faster access to NHS dental care across England, with up to 1.5 million extra treatments expected
to be delivered over the next 12 months. Various new measures were set out to attract new dentists, including increasing dental training places by up to
40 per cent by 2032, as part of the NHS Long Term Workforce Plan.

On Tuesday, Leadsom told MPs on the Health and Social Care Committee that the figure was based on NHS modelling of a “complicated set of factors” and there
is “quite a high likelihood of not being reliable as is the case with all modelling.”

Preeti Kaur Gill MP, shadow minister for primary care and public health, expressed shock over the admission by the public health minister that there is
uncertainty regarding the plan’s ability to deliver on its promises, which she said: “shows the Conservatives are out of ideas and out of time.”