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Private Dental Care - Covid19

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I've just received an email from my dentist, whom I pay for via Denplan. He's basically saying that the surgery is closed until further notice. However, he goes on to offer instructions in case of emergency and then gives one telephone number for his Denplan Patients (a Denplan number) and another number ( I guess his own mobile phone) for his "Private Patients". I'm kind of curious about this as, paying a monthly fee, I thought that I too was in the wonderful world of private dentistry? I'm not sure I fully understand this - can anyone enlighten me please. Are some patients more Private than others?

T

Replies

  • ToothsmithToothsmith Forumite
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    The email was probably put together pretty quickly. Denplan do have a service to help dentists put together communications for patients to try and word things clearly, but it has been somewhat busy this last couple of weeks. 

    If you should have an real emergency, then I would use the one you think would get to him directly. 
    How to find a dentist.
    1. Get recommendations from friends/family/neighbours/etc.
    2. Once you have a short-list, VISIT the practices - dont just phone. Go on the pretext of getting a Practice Leaflet.
    3. Assess the helpfulness of the staff and the level of the facilities.
    4. Only book initial appointment when you find a place you are happy with.
  • MoneySeeker1MoneySeeker1 Forumite
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    I was also confused by that sort of message. 

    Just my luck that something came up unexpectedly that needs fixing and therefore I need an appointment. Thankfully I'm not in pain, but I rang to ask what the position is and got this same sort of ansafone response.

    To which I thought "But it's a private dentist anyway and so what exactly do they mean by that - as I AM a private patient".

    Assumed there is some sort of mixed message going on here and that those who get the more restricted type message are the Denplan patients and those who (like myself) pay as we go are the ones counted as "private" in this instance. So I assume I am amongst the ones who come first (as a pay as you go-er) and then it's Denplan people next and then there would be NHS patients (only I don't think this practice has any NHS patients).

    Bird held prisoner in a cage by politicians still.

  • brook2jack2brook2jack2 Forumite
    105 posts
    100 Posts Name Dropper
    Actually no. 
    It's because Denplan and similar plans have coverage which pays for Advice and out of hours emergencies ie weekends , but you have to contact Denplan or practice plan first.

    private patients pay for call outs etc themselves.

    Dentists will triage and prioritise those in most need/pain/vulnerable first . 
  • TychoTMATychoTMA Forumite
    28 posts
    Second Anniversary 10 Posts Name Dropper
    Something that has occurred to me previously, when I pay my monthly fee to Denplan, am I entering in to a contract with Denplan or the Dentist? Should I have a written contract with the appropriate entity filed away somewhere? I've got lots of booklets from Denplan, but nothing that looks very formal.
  • UndervaluedUndervalued Forumite
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    A few years ago I had a friend, who lived several hundred miles, away staying with me for a couple of weeks. Sadly they had a significant dental emergency and as they were on Denplan, they contacted them for help. The pantomime Denplan made of arranging for them to be seen by a local practice was appalling. Meanwhile I phoned the NHS only practice I used and they offered to see my friend just after their normal closing time on the same day.
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