Free BDA membership for refugee dentists

British Dental Association to offer refugee dentists free memberships for a year

Refugee dentists coming into Northern Ireland will be eligible for a year’s free membership of the British Dental Association as an aide to gaining registration and working in the province.

The first group of 51 Syrian refugees arrived in Belfast before Christmas and more are expected over the coming months as part of the UK Government’s commitment to resettle 20,000 refugees in the UK over the next five years.

The BDA has announced that it will give any dentists who are resettled a year’s free membership in an effort to help them start the process of gaining registration in the UK. A spokesman for the association said: “For dentists, or indeed anyone who needs to depart their country of origin as a result of strife, this can be a very difficult period. Not only do you leave behind your country, but you also leave behind the right to work in your chosen profession.”

A dental degree gained outside the EU does not give an overseas dentist an automatic right to registration with the GDC. Non-Eu dentists need to complete the overseas registration exam, that can take at least 18 months to complete.