The General Dental Council (the GDC) has published its recently developed ‘Standards for the Dental Team.’ This is set to replace the GDC’s current Standards Guidelines. The GDC have maintained that all registrants have an individual duty to act professionally in their working environments and also an individual responsibility to follow the ‘Standards for the Dental Team.’
These new standards were approved and finalised by the GDC in June 2013 and will take effect from the 30th September 2013.
The new ‘Standards for the Dental Team’ consist of nine principles. Each principle contains a list of patient expectations. Standards and guidance which registrants are required to follow are also included. The terms ‘must’ and ‘should’ are continually expressed in the document which the GDC has used to highlight what is expected from dental professionals. The GDC clearly dictates what these terms mean. Other changes which have occurred and are included in the document are: stand-alone principles with a focus on communication and personal behaviour, emphasis on soft skills and also new stipulations to display indications of prices for dental treatments.
‘Developing the ‘Standards for the Dental Team has been a lengthly and in-depth process’ said Janet Collins who is the Head of the Standards from the GDC. Janet explained that the developing of the standards consisted of thorough research and investigation in the dental industry. Patients were interviewed, consultations took place, registrants also gave their input through organised workshops by the GDC. This was all completed with the approval from the council. Janet said further, ‘The aim of increased patient protect has been worth the hard work.’ The new standards include ‘patient expectations’ and this proves that the GDC are putting patients’ interest at the top of their priorities.
You can view the new ‘Standards for the Dental Team’ on the GDC website here. Hard copies are also in the process of being printed and are set to be sent to all dental professionals across the country by the end of August 2013.
Janet Collins also mentioned that, ‘Standards for the Dental Team’ will be supplemented by a number of additional guidance documents which will be available to view online in September.