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2,000 Waiting for Dentist in Penzance

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7:01am 5th January 2012

It is revealed nearly two thousand people in Penzance can not get an NHS dentist.

At one point in August the Primary Care Trust admits the waiting list had swelled to four thousand after two dentists left the NHS.

Some people say they are being forced to travel out of Cornwall for treatment.

Faye Dobinson from Perranuthnoe has been waiting for three years. She has been going to London.

She said, "It was tremendously difficult so I stuck with my dentist in London. So I had the train fare. I tried to tie it into visits to the family but, even so, sometimes you would have to have a repeat appointment. It was a pain."

Local MP Andrew George said, "Despite the Trust’s efforts, many locals are still waiting too long for a place with an NHS dentist.

“I was recently advised by the Trust that there are now no waiting lists for an NHS dentist in Truro, however, in Penzance, thousands of people still have to wait. This is clearly unacceptable. There is a perception in Cornwall that Truro always gets the cream. As they are closest to the emergency dental service, it really should be the other way around.”

Bridget Sampson from the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Primary Care Trust said, "There are currently 1,814 people on the NHS Dental waiting list for Penzance, all of whom can access urgent dental care from Bellair Health Clinic if required.  

"We are actively commissioning some more activity in the area to help to reduce the waiting list further.

"There have been no resignations or other movements of dentists in the Truro area which has meant provision has been stable and accounts for the difference in waiting lists between the two areas."

7:01am 5th January 2012

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