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“See you in Court”
These are the words used by the British Dental Association (BDA) after the General Dental Council (GDC) considered the annual retention fee for dentists and decided to go ahead with a 55 percent rise.
An email sent to dentists on Thursday says:
“I write to let you know that the Council today agreed that the level of the Annual Retention Fee (ARF) for dentists in 2015 would be £890 and £116 for dental care professionals. This is the first change in the ARF since 2010.”
The fee for dentists increases. However the fee for dental care professionals, who make up 61.1 percent of the profession, decreases. The BDA is determined to fight any increase for dentists as they feel the calculation are based poor information and the determination based on a flawed consultation process.
The BDA has announced that its application for a ‘rolled-up’ judicial review proceedings against the dental regulator has been granted. The review is now confirmed to take place at some point between the 1st and the 16th December 2014. These fast-tracked proceedings will enable resolution of the case in early December before dentists are legally bound to pay their professional fees on the 31st December 2014.
Mick Armstrong, Chair of the British Dental Association’s Principal Executive Committee, said:
“This afternoon the GDC’s Council sat down to pick from three shades of fee hike. Over the last four months the regulator has spectacularly failed to make a case for any of the options on the table. Each of these models emerged after a car crash consultation, and we see little point in debating their relative merits.”
The GDC says…
“The fees for 2015 are based on the ARF policy agreed by the Council in June 2014. Following this policy – which links the fee directly to the cost of regulating each registrant group –The Council’s decision followed a careful analysis of more than 4,000 responses to a consultation which ran for a nine week period until the 4th September 2014.”
The GDC also says that the forecasts and budget projections for 2015 - 2017 have been reviewed by KPMG – providing independent confirmation that the full range of underlying assumptions were realistic. Further, the Executive and Council of the GDC say that they are determined that they will succeed in making the improvements necessary to be a most effective regulator. The additional funds raised in 2015 are meant to help to ensure that they meet this challenge.
Watch this space!
Dr John Shapter – QCS Expert Dental Contributor