Dental NHS copayments total £4.5bn since 1997

NHS dental patients have paid £4.5bn in charges since 1997, while 2 million people have “lost” their dentist, the Conservatives have claimed.The total paid in charges per year increased 22 per cent between 1997 and 2007, according to figures released to shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley.

New analysis by the Conservatives reveals that:

NHS dental patients have paid £4.5 billion in charges under Labour since 1997, despite 2 million people losing their NHS dentist.

Although spread between fewer patients, the annual amount paid in dental charges has soared by 22 per cent since 1997. Patients are now on average paying 35 per cent more for NHS dental treatment than they were in 1997.

Shadow Health Minister Mike Penning said: “Labour’s dental legacy is one of shameful failure.

“Not only are people now paying 35 per cent more when they see their NHS dentist, but Labour’s botched policies mean that millions of hard-working families have completely lost access to affordable dental care.

“Labour ministers need to own up to their mistakes, stop dithering and take action now to rectify the mess they’ve got the country into.”

From:
http://www.hsj.co.uk/announcements/2008/08/tories_report_dental_charges_rise.html

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