How would you feel about being charged a PPE Supplement by your dentist? According to The Eastern Daily Press that’s the case in some dentists in Norwich.
Mike Griffin, owner and lead technician at DentureTech Laboratory, Bedford said: “Private practices can do as they please, and, as a businesses they are doubtless being hit with extra costs, so, economics dictate that the cost be passed to the consumer.”
“I’m not aware that any of our local surgeries in Bedford are doing this. It’s a complicated one: I do think it’s problematic if any of them do choose to levy additional charges at a time when patients are most likely to be struggling with job security and income. That said, as a small business owner, I understand the need to make ends meet. It’s yet another complicated question which we’re all battling in this new world!”
Dentists were reported as being one of the most sought-after services during the Covid-19 lockdown, with Google searches for news on dental practices up 120%. Whilst this is undeniable – as anyone who found themselves with a cavity during Corona will attest – is it justifiable for dentists to charge more than other services?
“Are you being charged PPE costs at the hairdresser? Or even at shops, banks, or garden centres?” Michael concludes: “Not as far as I’ve seen, so I’m not sure dentists have much of a leg to stand on…”
NHS England has provided a robust “Transition to Recovery” document which lists the PPE that dentists are required to use and lists approved suppliers from which it can be purchased.
“Costs of PPE from the main suppliers don’t seem to be prohibitive,” Michael continues “but it would set a bad precedent if surgeries were using this levy to profit from customers in any way.”
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