IDA makes 10 Budget recommendations

Budget 2014

The Irish Dental Association (IDA) has made 10 key recommendations for the Budget 2014 covering oral healthcare provision and policy and the business of dentistry.

The association calls for the reinstatement of preventive and restorative care for PRSI payers and medical card holders as well as the introduction of a voucher system for all eligible patients. It also calls for the reinstatement of a “sufficient number” of staff in all HSE areas to ensure patients of the Public Dental Service (PDS) and Orthodontic Service have access to the same level of care, irrespective of location.

The IDA also urges the Government to engage with the IDA on the reconfiguration of the PDS and the Orthodontic Service to ensure that any changes fully reflect the best interests of the patient.

Among its oral healthcare policy recommendations are a plea for a National Oral Health Policy that provides “equitable access to a range of treatments required to achieve and maintain optimal oral health for all citizens”. The association also offered to help explore the potential participation of dentists in the areas of health promotion and disease management.

]It also recommends a percentage of any taxes raised through consumption taxes on tobacco or high sugar/fat products be diverted towards an oral healthcare programme. Recommendations eight and nine are for the appointment of a full-time Chief Dental Officer to the Department of Health and the reinstatement of the HSE Vocational Training Scheme in dentistry.

The final recommendation on the IDA’s list states that it hopes for the introduction of incentives similar to those provided to other healthcare professionals and address the cost of doing business in Ireland.