Pay uplift for NI dentists ‘too little, too late’
The BDA has responded to news from the Department of Health, Northern Ireland that general dental practitioners will receive an uplift of 1 per cent to pay, recommended by the DDRB earlier this year.
The Department of Health had announced public sector pay policy for 2017/18in early December – but had left the status of contracted health workers including GDPs and GPs uncertain.
Dentist leaders had been urgently seeking clarification, and have continued to express grave concerns over the service’s sustainability after nearly a decade of pay squeeze.
Taxable incomes for associates and practice owners in NI have fallen by over a quarter since 2008.
Peter Crooks, chair of BDA’s Northern Ireland Dental Practice Committee said, “While we welcome clarity on the uplift, once again, it’s a case of too little, too late. This below inflation uplift will do little to address the chronic underinvestment in the service, and the year on year erosion of pay.
“Colleagues have been hit by a drop in real incomes without parallel in Northern Ireland’s public sector. We cannot be expected to keep Health Service dentistry running on vapour.”