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Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK)

The Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK) is based at the Royal College of Surgeons of England. It provides services to help those in general dental practice raise standards of patient care. It does this through standards setting, providing education courses and assessments, CPD, policy development, research and publications. Membership of FGDP(UK) is open to dentists and other registered dental professionals.

31 January 2017

The Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK) (FGDP(UK)), the professional body representing general dental practice, and The Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) and its Faculty of Dental Surgery (FDS) announce today that FDGP(UK) is taking the first step towards becoming an independent organisation.

FGDP(UK) was established as a faculty of the RCS in 1992. During that time the Faculty has built a professional home for the general practice dentistry community in the UK.

As the Faculty celebrates its 25th anniversary, the Board of FGDP(UK) has decided its aspirations are best served as an independent organisation, whilst remaining in close partnership with the Royal College of Surgeons and its Faculty of Dental Surgery. Over the coming months it plans to lay the foundations of that organisation for the benefit of patients and the profession.

FDGP(UK) delivers world leading courses in implantology, minor oral surgery and restorative care. With a membership approaching 5,000, and with an international reach, FGDP(UK) also publishes a highly respected Primary Dental Journal and produces clinical guidelines written by dentists, for dentists.

The world leading dental examination in the UK, the MJDF, which is administered jointly between the FGDP(UK) and FDS, will continue to be the leading qualification for the dental profession.

17 November 2016

FGDP(UK) says dentists are best-placed to detect mouth cancer

The Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK) is supporting Mouth Cancer Action Month by highlighting the critical role of dentists in detecting mouth cancers.

The incidence of oral cancer in the UK has risen by a third in the last decade to over 7,000 per annum – or 20 diagnoses a day – and numbers are expected to continue increasing. However if the disease is detected and treated early, survival rates over five years can almost double.

The FGDP(UK) says general dental practitioners are uniquely placed to check for signs of oral cancer during the routine examination, and to make referrals where they suspect a patient may have cancer or a pre-cancerous lesion. It cautions however that reassuring, supporting and encouraging patients to attend referral appointment is not straightforward when patients may be alarmed, and recommends putting simple measures in place in practices.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommends that people with suspected cancer who are referred to a cancer service are given written information encouraging them to attend, and the Faculty suggests that oral health professionals and dental practices can help speed up diagnosis for suspected cancer by make suitable pre-prepared written information, such as the NHS’s patient information for urgent referrals leaflet, available for patients.

As part of Mouth Cancer Action Month, FGDP(UK) is also supporting the campaign for the NHS childhood immunisation programme to extend provision of the Human Papilloma Virus vaccination to include boys as well as girls. HPV is responsible for 5% of all cancers, and almost half of the 2,000 men diagnosed with an HPV-related cancer every year in the UK die from the condition within five years, yet the HPV Action campaign group says immunising boys would cost the taxpayer only £22m a year.

Dr Mick Horton, Dean of the Faculty, said:

“Mouth Cancer Action Month is a vital opportunity to highlight the profession’s role in helping improve diagnosis, and ultimately, survival rates, for oral cancers. There are many useful resources available to help the profession communicate effectively with our patients, and we should consider making them easily available within our practices.”

Stronger action needed on fizzy drinks, says FGDP(UK)

The Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK) says that a newly-published study underlines the need for stronger action to reduce the consumption of sugar from fizzy drinks.

The analysis of the sugar and calories in sugar-sweetened carbonated drinks, conducted by the Action on Sugar campaign group and published in the BMJ Open, reveals that the average 330ml can contains more sugar than an adult’s recommended daily maximum intake of 30g (equivalent to 7.5 teaspoons), with some containing over 52g (12 teaspoons).

FGDP(UK) is supporting the authors’ calls for further steps to be taken to cut the amount of sugar consumed from fizzy drinks in order to reduce the incidence of obesity, type 2 diabetes and dental caries.

The Faculty’s Dean, Dr Mick Horton, said:

“The recent news that some manufacturers and supermarkets are reformulating their soft drinks ranges is welcome, and shows that the Sugar Tax is working even before its implementation. However the fact that the average fizzy drink contains more sugar than an adult should consume in an entire day, and three-quarters of them contain more than a child’s recommended maximum, proves they simply cannot form part of a healthy and balanced diet, and stronger action is needed.

“Further restrictions on advertising of high sugar drinks, and a ban on price promotions, would help stop tens of thousands of children having to be hospitalised to have their teeth extracted, and if the government makes reformulation to under 5g of sugar per 100ml mandatory, the savings to the NHS will far outstrip the tax foregone, and more importantly the nation’s health will be improved.”

FGDP and BDA  join forces to keep antibiotics working

Organisations from across dentistry and other health sectors have come together to ask oral health professionals to support European Antibiotic Awareness Day and World Antibiotic Awareness Week by joining their social media ‘Thunderclap’.

The Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK), the British Dental Association and the Association of Clinical Oral Microbiologists, supported by Public Health England, the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy and the Antibiotic Action initiative, are asking their members to sign up at the Antibiotic Prescribing Pledge webpage and commit to help keep antibiotics working by auditing their management of oral and dental infections. The site will then post a message of support on their Facebook, Twitter or Tumblr profiles to help raise awareness among fellow professionals and the general public.

Antimicrobial resistance is a global problem that leads to antibiotics no longer being effective in treating even simple infections, with serious consequences for everyone, but particularly those undergoing major surgery, chemotherapy, organ or stem cell transplants. Every year, 25,000 people across Europe and 700,000 worldwide die from antibiotic-resistant infections, and the government predicts the annual global toll could be 10 million by 2050 – more than all deaths from cancer.

In the UK, dentists account for 9% of antibiotics prescribed in community healthcare. Auditing the management of dental infections can help reduce the number of antibiotics prescribed inappropriately – such as in response to patient demand, or in the absence of systemic signs of infection – and the FGDP(UK) publishes free online guidance to help dentists decide when they are required. A new audit tool for General Dental Practitioners, developed with Public Health England, will also soon be available on the FGDP(UK) and BDA websites.

The organisations say that dentists can help their patients understand that for dental pain, dental care is usually a more effective treatment than antibiotics, and that when antibiotics are prescribed, taking and disposing of them responsibly can help fight the rise in antibiotic-resistant infections.

FGDP(UK) Dean, Dr Mick Horton, said, “Spreading the word about antimicrobial resistance will help save lives, maybe even your own or that of someone close to you. Please take a minute to help keep antibiotics working by joining our Thunderclap.”

BDA Chair Mick Armstrong said: “Effective antimicrobial stewardship is the best way to meet this clear and present danger to public health. We all need to play our part, and you can start by getting this vital message out.”

Dr Sandra White, Director of Dental Public Health at Public Health England, added: “The Antibiotic Guardian campaign is co-ordinating our World-leading efforts to help the public and healthcare professionals ensure antibiotics are prescribed only when necessary, and taken and disposed of responsibly. Primary care dentists in the UK prescribe 3.7 million courses of antibiotics every year, and we are delighted to be working with the FGDP(UK), the BDA and other leading organisations to help them play their part in tackling antimicrobial resistance.”

The FGDP-BDA-PHE-ACOM-BSAC-AA Thunderclap page is at https://www.thunderclap.it/projects/49649-antibiotic-prescribing-pledge

FGDP(UK)’s guidelines, Antimicrobial Prescribing for General Dental Practitioners, are available in book form at http://www.fgdp.org.uk/content/publications/antimicrobial-prescribing-for-general-dental-pract.ashx or for free online at http://www.fgdp.org.uk/osi/open-standards-initiative.ashx.

The joint organisations are also encouraging dentists, other healthcare professionals, educators and members of the public to sign up as ‘Antibiotic Guardians’ at https://antibioticguardian.com.

FGDP(UK) Publishes New Implant Training Standards
The Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK) [FGDP(UK)] has published a new edition of its Training Standards For Implant Dentistry, the first such new edition since 2012.

The document aims to provide a summary of the training that a reasonable dental practitioner carrying out safe implant dentistry in the United Kingdom should undertake, before embarking upon patient care in this discipline.

The Standards feature a number of changes from the last edition including:
• The need to have awareness of the current GDC Standards for the Dental Team 2013.
• The need to have adequate knowledge in the use of CBCT and compliance with IRMER. • The need to ensure that training courses which are attended to acquire skills in implant dentistry are appropriately quality assured, and that there is adequate documentation available about the course, its contents and attendance.
• A reminder of the need for all members of the team involved in implant dentistry to update their skills and knowledge in this field.

FGDP(UK) Vice Dean, Abhi Pal, who led the working group that updated the Standards said:

“This is an important document, both for dentists as consumers of implant training courses, and also for dentists who are providers of such training. Raising the standard of implant training courses will ensure that practitioners are skilled, knowledgeable and confident in their work, and patients are provided with safe and reliable treatments in this high profile and high cost dental discipline.”

The Standards are available to download at www.fgdp.org.uk as a part of the Open Standards Initiative.

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