“DENTISTS NOT A PRIORITY FOR VACCINATION DESPITE WORKING IN THE MOUTH”, CARRICK DOCTOR DEMANDS RECOGNITION FOR FRONTLINE ESSENTIAL SERVICE

22 January 2021 No Comments by The Northern Standard

Promised PPE not forthcoming and medical card scheme inadequate

By Veronica Corr

On Thursday evening last, 14th January, The Northern Standard spoke to Dr. Bernie Fee, a dentist who runs a large practice, Fee Dental on Chapel Lane, Carrickmacross, about how the pandemic had affected dentistry and the pressures it has presented for the profession. Dr. Fee pulled no punches, stating that the Government and HSE had to step up and address the following issues: 1) Dentists need to be prioritised for the vaccination against COVID-19 as they are frontline and work in the mouth, from where the virus is transmitted; 2) Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) that they were promised by former Minister for Health Simon Harris in April has not yet materialised and 3) The Dental Treatment Services Scheme (DTSS) for medical card holders needs to be revisited or replaced because almost 25% of dentists have left the scheme because they do it at a loss. Patients then have to find a new dentist and only have limited treatments available to them on the medical card anyway. PPE ISSUE This interview began with this reporter asking the dentist what challenges COVID- 19 had posed for her profession. Dr. Fee, a longstanding member of the Irish….

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