Chronicling the new normal

As dental practices across Scotland began to reopen this week, their return to work has been previewed in a special edition of Connect’s Scottish Dental magazine.

With a masthead that includes a ‘Thank you’ to the NHS, key workers, and the dental profession, the cover depicts ‘The new normal’ – a team treating a patient in full PPE – and its implications for the practice and business of dentistry.

The magazine features interviews with key figures as well as commissioned articles from leaders among the profession and dental team members who redeployed to care for COVID-19 patients.

It charts their experience during the pandemic and their thoughts on the future of dentistry and the potential impact on the nation’s oral health.

Professor Jason Leitch, Scotland’s National Clinical Director and the public face of Scotland’s efforts to combat the virus, tells Scottish Dental that work on a new model of care – plans for which were revealed by the magazine earlier this year – “will not be lost as the Government moves through with the remobilisation of NHS services”.

He adds: “The funding arrangements for NHS dental services going forward will be clearly linked towards the delivery of the new model of care.”

Also in the magazine, dental nurse Lesley Allan describes her experience of working in a COVID-19 Assessment Centre, and Lucy Chung, a consultant orthodontist, details the efforts to maintain a level of care for dental patients.

Roz McMullan, President of the British Dental Association, and Edmund Proffitt, Chief Executive of the British Dental Industry Association, share their perspectives.

Looking ahead, Patricia Thomson, a Board member of the Faculty of General Dental Practitioners, outlines the challenges faced by the profession and Sarah Manton, Director of the Faculty of Dental Trainers, explores the implications for education.

“The impactful cover and great design throughout provided a really strong platform for the compelling content,” said Will Peakin, the magazine’s Editor. “The team also worked hard to support the industry and businesses throughout what has been a challenging time.”