Recent announcements that new dental services are coming to Boston, Louth and Spalding in 2020 have been welcomed as good news for people needing dental treatment in Lincolnshire.

NHS England has revealed preparations are underway for a new NHS dental service for patients requiring routine dental treatment in Boston and Louth, as well as a new 365 day 8 to 8 service in Spalding for patients requiring both urgent care and routine appointments.

All are expected to open in March 2020.

However Healthwatch Lincolnshire is still concerned that the NHS was unable to secure contracts for an additional service in Spalding, as well as two further services in Mablethorpe and Skegness/Spilsby.

Having recently met with the NHS team responsible for NHS Dental Services in the county, a Healthwatch spokesman said: “We know they are working hard to find companies prepared to take on these three new services but a severe shortage of NHS dentists is one of the major factors why the NHS is having difficulty in awarding the contracts.

“In starting to address the problem of lack of NHS dentists, we were really pleased to hear there is a Lincolnshire initiative to invite and encourage more young people to consider a career in dentistry, with one recruitment drive already happening this month.

During our meeting with the NHS, we also heard about their plans to move more orthodontic services for young people across Lincolnshire.”

Currently the service is concentrated in Lincoln meaning all patients and their families have to travel significant distances for their orthodontic treatment.

Under the new plans orthodontic services will now be available in areas such as Gainsborough, Boston, Spalding, Grantham, Sleaford and Horncastle or Louth as well as Lincoln City. This change means there could well be less disruption to children and their families needing orthodontic treatment for things like school. Healthwatch Lincolnshire feels this also offers a more equally accessible service for all our younger residents.

If you have any comments you would like to make about your recent trip to the dentist, or if you are having difficulties finding a dentist please contact Healthwatch Lincolnshire.

You can either email  info@healthwatchlincolnshire.co.uk or telephone 01205 820892.