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As practices reopen today, FDS publishes guidance on prioritising patients

08 Jun 2020

Commenting on the Faculty of Dental Surgeons prioritisation guidance, Professor Michael Escudier, Dean of the Faculty of Dental Surgeons at the Royal College of Surgeons of England said:

“Dental practices are restarting services today, and difficult decisions will need to be made about how patients are prioritised. Understandably there will be patients desperate to finish the treatment plan they started before COVID-19 hit, but ultimately a patient who is in excruciating pain needs to be prioritised over a planned root canal or filling. They will also need to manage patient expectations, particularly as there will be a huge backlog of patients, yet fewer patients will be able to be treated in the same time-frame before the outbreak. 

“FDS in collaboration with a range of stakeholders has published prioritisation guidance intended to assist oral health care professionals in triaging and managing patients as we transition to recovery. This should be used in conjunction with national guidance relating to good practice and infection prevention and control. National guidance is available online for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

“It will likely be some months before services return to providing care in a similar manner to that seen before lockdown, and the pace is dependent on a continuing decline in COVID infections. 

Notes to editors

  1. The prioritisation guidance was coordinated by a short term working group which included representatives from the Association of Dental Hospitals, Specialist Associations and Societies, the Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK) and the Faculty of Dental Surgery, Royal College of Surgeons of England. 
  2. The Royal College of Surgeons of England is a professional membership organisation and registered charity, which exists to advance surgical standards and improve patient care. 
  3. For more information, please contact the RCS Press Office: telephone: 0207 869 6047/6052; or email:  For out-of-hours media enquiries, please telephone: 0207 869 6056.


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