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    • naomiamy
    • By naomiamy 11th Oct 16, 8:36 PM
    • 2Posts
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    naomiamy
    NHS Dental Charges
    • #1
    • 11th Oct 16, 8:36 PM
    NHS Dental Charges 11th Oct 16 at 8:36 PM
    I think I've been overcharged by my dentist...?
    I have NHS dental treatments, and on July 4th this year was told I would need 4 fillings. I was given the option of paying the band 1 payment then after treatment paying the reminder to make it band 2, or to simply pay the band 2 payment upfront - I took this option to get it out the way. I then booked the treatment appointments - the dentist suggested 2 appointments to get 2 fillings each time. I booked one for July 21 and one for August 11, which the receptionist wrote on a card for me. First appointment went fine, but I had a voicemail in August reminding me about an appointment on August 9 - due to the date on my card being August 11 I had planned for this and was unable to make the appointment on the 9th so called up to cancel, explaining that she had put the wrong date on my card. She said to call back after speaking to work and consulting my diary to get it rescheduled, and I went in for my second 2 fillings on Monday 10 October (yesterday). After my fillings were done the dentist told me there had been 2 months between appointments so I'd have to pay the band 2 payment again. I was told I had no option but to pay it and that he would call the NHS for me to see about getting me a refund. When I went to the receptionist to pay and book for my next checkup she charged me but said they wouldn't be contacting the NHS, and I was welcome to try for a refund but it was unlikely. Unfortunately I'd waited so long for my appointment I was really late for work so couldn't stand and argue my case. I feel that because the fillings were all decided on from my first appointment as one course of treatment then this should all be just one payment at band 2, not 2 payments. Nothing was mentioned over the phone that I'd have to pay extra due to a gap between appointments, especially since I had to cancel due to their error of mixing up my dates. The receptionist says it's not her place to refund me when I called today. Am I right here? Should I be getting a refund for the second payment?
Page 1
    • brook2jack
    • By brook2jack 11th Oct 16, 8:50 PM
    • 3,849 Posts
    • 3,453 Thanks
    brook2jack
    • #2
    • 11th Oct 16, 8:50 PM
    • #2
    • 11th Oct 16, 8:50 PM
    Unfortunately the dentist has a contractual commitment to finish treatment within a two month period. If they send the forms off late they will not get paid and indeed the money already paid by the patient is taken off the whole contract value. This is particularly important where people cancel or miss appointments and do not make a new appointment within two months of their last appointment.

    The practical implication is that most dental practices have signs up warning that if you cancel or miss appointments and there is a two month or more gap , a new course of treatment has to be opened with new charges.

    The dental surgery has no discretion to wave these charges as two courses of treatment have been opened and you cannot continue a course of treatment if more than two months have elapsed and the NHS will not refund the charges.
    • naomiamy
    • By naomiamy 11th Oct 16, 8:57 PM
    • 2 Posts
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    naomiamy
    • #3
    • 11th Oct 16, 8:57 PM
    • #3
    • 11th Oct 16, 8:57 PM
    Really? Their poster makes no mention of 2 months, and since it was their error with my appointment card and I made the next available appointment, surely it's their problem they couldn't fit me in in 2 months? Or they could at least have mentioned it over the phone?
    • brook2jack
    • By brook2jack 11th Oct 16, 9:12 PM
    • 3,849 Posts
    • 3,453 Thanks
    brook2jack
    • #4
    • 11th Oct 16, 9:12 PM
    • #4
    • 11th Oct 16, 9:12 PM
    Yes they should have mentioned it on the phone but the NHS business service is very strict on the timing of sending forms off.

    If the practice was unable to offer you any appointment for a couple of months then you may have had a case to for them to try to keep a course of treatment open .But if there were appointments but just not at a time to suit you then they have to send the form off.

    To put this into context the NHS will not refund you the charge. If the practice refunds you the charge it comes out of their pocket so effectively it will have cost them to provide your fillings and check up.

    Here is a copy of an NHS dentists conditions with mention of the two month rule.

    http://www.bath.ac.uk/dentist/appointments.html

    And another http://www.rudgwickdental.co.uk/Appointments.html
    Last edited by brook2jack; 11-10-2016 at 9:17 PM.
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