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Another Day, Another Dental Strategy

25 August 2006

Another Day, Another Dental Strategy

The Government’s vision of a seamless community dental service for children and adolescents is certainly comprehensive but unfortunately it seems to be a long way from being a reality, says New Zealand First’s health spokesperson, Barbara Stewart.

“The comment that a strategic vision is preferable to a formal strategy so that the vision can evolve should send a shiver down the spine of any parent with children whose teeth need care.

“As usual the responsibility for implementing the plan has been thrown back on the district health boards who are now working on business cases to implement the Government’s plan. No doubt any delays will be all their fault.

“In April of this year Wellington’s health board expressed concern about the setting up of yet another Ministry of Health steering group to revisit the provision of dental services for children and adolescents.

“The Minister now says that the Health Ministry will consider the first round of funding applications for the community services in November.

“It will be interesting to see how long it takes after the unveiling of the vision for there to be any actual treatment available to many of the children whose teeth have been woefully neglected for the past few years,” said Mrs Stewart.

ENDS

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