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Dental Services - Introduction

Dental Services - Introduction

Record Number: 1841

Phone: 0345 45 65 990
Dental Information and Advice Line
Mon-Fri: 8.05am to 5.45pm

Website: http://www.nhsgrampian.org


Dental Practitioners provide general dental services. It should be noted that although patients have complete freedom of choice of dentists, dentists may exercise their right to accept or decline patients. Information has been prepared in accordance with the National Health Service (General Dental Services) (Scotland) Regulations 2010.

All practitioners operate an appointment system and consult by appointment, except in an emergency.

Certain practitioners limit their services to the provision of orthodontic treatment and normally only provide treatment for patients who are referred from general dental practitioners. Orthodontics is a branch of dentistry which involves the straightening or moving of teeth to improve their appearance and to improve how they work.

People under 18 register with a dental practitioner under what is called a capitation arrangement and those over 18 under a continuing care arrangement. This means that once a person has joined a dentists list as an NHS patient, they can enjoy lifetime registration, unless either patient or dental practice decides to end the registration.

Patient and dentist will discuss any dental work needed and jointly agree a Treatment Plan which sets out the treatment needed. After the initial examination the dentist will discuss how much the treatment will cost and the cost of each item on the treatment plan - even for those who pay charges, there is a limit to what they can be asked to pay. A patient will receive a copy of the Treatment Plan to take home with them so they have a reminder of what is to be done. If there is a change in the proposed treatment after the treatment has started, the dentist will inform the patient and both can decide how best to proceed.

Everything that is needed to make the mouth healthy can be provided under the NHS but some of this treatment can be provided privately if wished. The dentist will discuss with the patient the different options available and compare the costs / benefits before deciding on what suits them. A filling or crown provided under the NHS which has to be replaced within a year may be replaced free of NHS charge.

In an emergency telephone advice outwith surgery hours is available, and the dentist will try to arrange treatment within a reasonable time.

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However, emergency arrangements are only applicable to registered patients.


Many complaints arise from misunderstandings and if you have a problem or are unhappy with something that has happened it is often best to talk to someone close to the cause of your complaint such as your dentist or the practice manager, who will try to sort out the problem. If you would prefer to talk to someone who is not directly involved in your care, you may wish to contact the appropriate complaints officer. All dental practices operate in-house complaints procedures and have a complaints officer or someone designated to receive complaints.

If the practice complaints officer is involved in your care, you may wish to contact the Feedback Adviser at NHS Grampian, as undernoted, who can act as an intermediary or to assist in resolving your complaint. It is important that you make your complaint as early as possible. Normally a complaint about NHS services will only be investigated if it is made:

  • within 6 months of the incident causing the problem or
  • made within 6 months of discovering the problem, provided that is within 12 months of the incident

These time limits can be waived if there is a good reason why you could not complain earlier.

This initial stage in the complaints procedure is called Local Resolution. Normally a complaint will be acknowledged within 2 days of receipt by the practice and an explanation provided within 10 working days. If you are not satisfied with the outcome of Local Resolution you can refer your case to the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman, explaining in writing why you are dissatisfied with the Local Resolution or with how your complaint has been handled. Any request for the involvement of the Ombudsman should be made within 28 calendar days of the letter from the practice advising you of the outcome of Local Resolution.

If you would like further information or advice on the complaints procedure, please contact:

NHS Grampian 
Feedback Team
Summerfield House 
2 Eday Road  
AB15 6RE
Tel: 0345 337 6338

Email: nhsgrampian.feedback@nhs.net

Further information can be found here: NHS Grampian - Feedback and Complaints

NHS services are provided by NHS Grampian.

Enquiries should be directed to:

Primary Care Contracts Team (Dental)
NHS Grampian
Woodend Hospital
Queens Road
AB15 6LS
Tel: 01224 556023

More Information

Area Covered: Aberdeen / Aberdeenshire / Moray

Aberdeenshire Coverage: Banff & Buchan / Buchan / Formartine / Garioch / Kincardine & Mearns / Marr

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Last Updated: 2017-06-19 07:07:04   
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