Thank you so much for your response. I agree with your statement 100% a dentist can’t work without a nurse due to many reasons including; infection control and medical emergencies! I completely understand it isn’t illegal for dentist to work without nurses. It’s more of being morally correct.
1 year 3 weeks ago - 1 year 2 weeks ago#9089by unflappable
Not illegal for a dentist to work without a nurse, they may in n emergency.
But this is difficult and slow for the dentist and less comfortable and occasionally risky for the patients. Higher chance of lip burns from shank of slow-speed drill, tongue cuts from high-speed drill and what if a medical emergency occurs?!!! Usually means poor infection control unless that dentist is willing to run late because they are cleaning up properly between patients. What does your infection control lead say?
The higher number of patients a dentist can attend to in a day with a nurse compared to without a nurse means phoning the agency for a temp for the day effectively costs them nothing. (A day's wage for a dental nurse is hilariously small compared to other costs). The only reason I can think of for this happening apart from sickness is if there are a lot of dentists/surgeries but gappy diaries.
Reception need to organise the diaries better in the long-term. They may not know this if nobody points this out. They my think everything's just fine.
If you think you things are not improving you could put your CV out there and consider your options .
Call a meeting with the registered manager and ask : how long do you think I can keep this up? They are being horrible to patients, dentists and YOU. They are not making wise business decisions. Is the manager prepared to step in him/herself in case of emergency absence of a dental nurse? I think the trend to hire practice managers from retail backgrounds or with a business management degree is bad news, probably think we are just there to look pretty. If your manager is one of these they would benefit from putting their name on a dental nurse training course and stepping into the surgery.
Last Edit: 1 year 2 weeks ago by unflappable. Reason: extra info
The practice I work in is also losing nurses. Employees are moving to other careers due to the constant pressure from the GDC to study, plan reflect etc.... We are classed as professionals yet many are being paid minimum wage.
I would not be happy for a dentist to be without a nurse at any time, especially in this day and age . You are not only there to assist but to act as a chaperone for both dentist and patient. Should a patient make a complaint you would be a witness.
Working between dentists is an unpleasant way to work and mistakes are more likely to happen. Unfortunately I don't know what the legal situation is in general practice.
Throughout the years I have worked at my current Practice we have had many members leave.
The current situation now is a serious lack of nurses to dentists, the practice manager is allowing for dentists to go without a full time nurse and telling dental nurses that they will have to nurse between 2 or 3 dentists at a time.
I want to know my rights as a dental nurse, is this even legal to allow this type of nursing?