Dental professionals and their teams are now being prioritised for a COVID-19 vaccine

Sara Hurley, Chief Dental Officer England along with her colleagues Eric Rooney and Jason Wong, Deputy Chief Dental Officers issue another update regarding dentistry and the dental teams across England who will now be prioritised to receives the vaccine sooner than later. In the latest NHS bulletin, Sara says:

We are delighted to announce that alongside other health and care staff, dental professionals and their teams are now being prioritised for a COVID-19 vaccine.

This means that dental teams supporting the NHS, those working in private or mixed practices will all be entitled to a vaccine, this includes specialist practices and clinical dental technicians registered with the CQC.

Dental professionals who work for a NHS trust will fall within the vaccination programme co-ordinated through their trust. Locum clinical staff employed by the practice and non-clinical ancillary staff who may have social contact with patients but are not directly involved in patient care (e.g. receptionists and cleaners) are also included.

The coronavirus vaccination programme, the largest in the health service’s history, is off to a strong start having already vaccinated more people than anywhere else in Europe, and it is expanding geographically each week as vaccine supplies increase.

As frontline health professionals, it is important that when you are called to be vaccinated you attend. Private practices are advised to ensure their contact details with the CQC are up to date as a matter of urgency. More detail is in this bulletin.

We have the PPE, we have access to testing, we are sharing the message loud and clear that practices are open and now we have access to the vaccine, too. Dentistry is an essential medical service, not an optional extra. Patients need to and deserve to see their dental teams and the vaccine roll out is another important next step in the fight against COVID-19 and restoring NHS dentistry.

More widely, commissioners are able to issue those who work in NHS dental practices with documentation that prove critical worker status. More detail is below.

We are also very proud of Satyesh Parmar, Asha Thomson and Heather Pope who were honoured by the Queen in the New Year's Honours List. As I am sure you will agree, they are three shining examples of how our profession improves lives.

The full bulletin can be accessed here.