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News / September 14, 2015

Morale ‘shockingly low’ among Northern Ireland dentists

by Guy Hiscott

Urgent action is needed for ‘shockingly low’ morale among high street dentists in the UK and particularly Northern Ireland, the British Dental Association (BDA) has said.

Data from the HSCIC Dental Working Hours, 2012/13 & 2013/14 Motivation Analysis highlights low levels of morale amongst dentists throughout the UK, but dentists in Northern Ireland appeared to be most concerned about their working conditions.

Poor morale in Northern Ireland was linked to working longer hours, carrying out more Health Service and administrative work and taking less leave.

Commenting on the findings, the chair of the BDA’s Northern Ireland Dental Practice Committee, Peter Crooks, said: ‘These figures are shocking but unfortunately they come as no surprise to those working in the dental profession.

‘They echo findings from the BDA’s own research, which found that low morale and motivation was linked to heavy workloads, excessive administration, increasing bureaucracy, regulatory burdens and rising expenses.

‘The BDA believes this is an escalating situation which requires action now.

‘Dentists work hard to deliver high quality care to their patients but it must not be at the cost of burn-out for dentists.

‘The government must recognise the heavy demands placed upon general dental practitioners and start addressing the causes of poor morale – it’s vital for the good of everyone’s health.’