25 July 2006

Stevenson Comments on National Dental Inspection Programme

Banff & Buchan MSP Stewart Stevenson has commented on the National Dental Inspection Programme report of primary seven children for 2005 which was produced by the Scottish Dental Epidemiological Coordinating Committee as a result of collaborative work between all Scottish NHS Boards, Scottish Local Authorities and the Dental Health Services Research Unit in Dundee.

Commenting on the report, Mr Stevenson said:

      “Children’s dental wellbeing is of extreme importance and therefore it is necessary that it is assessed and parents are made aware of this and informed about the ways in which they can take the necessary steps to remedy any problems that may arise with their children and their dental hygiene.

      “It is therefore disappointing, but unfortunately no surprise, that Scotland does not compare well with other countries in the UK with Scotland having the highest number of decayed, missing and filled teeth. The majority of dental diseases continues to be borne by children from more deprived backgrounds and this unacceptable poor level of oral health must be addressed.

      “Grampian is well below the Scottish average of 59.2% of primary seven children being free from decay. This may very well be linked to the lack of availability of dental services in the North-east and is why I continue to press for this situation to be addressed. The Scottish Executive set the target that 60% of primary seven children should be free of obvious decay by the year 2010 and the North-east clearly has a long way to go to meet that target.

      “The role of dental care and wellbeing must be given more recognition and we must ensure that all schoolchildren have access to dental provision as a priority.”

Categories [Health and Community Care]

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