Fitness to practise

Fitness to practise

As part of our duty to protect the public, if a dentist or dental care professional falls seriously short of the standards expected of them we can either remove from the Register, or restrict what they can do professionally. These powers, given to us by Parliament, cover all registered dentists and dental care professionals whether they’re working in the NHS or in private practice.
 
There may be doubts about a dental professionals' fitness to practise due to:
  • health;
  • conduct, including convictions and cautions; or
  • performance.

Of course, we look carefully at every case. In some cases we may simply offer advice rather than removing or restricting a dental professional's registration.

Reporting unfitness to practise

Concerns about a dental professional’s fitness to practise may come to us from a number of parties. As a registered dental professional yourself you have a duty to raise concerns if necessary. And, of course, patients themselves may approach us.
 
When they do if they are unsure who can help, we advise them. We have a Who can help page which may be of use to dental professionals too. This may involve referring them back to their practice or elsewhere, for instance to their NHS body. If we become involved a patient needs to provide us with certain information.  Allegations are then dealt with following our complaints procedure which is designed to protect patients and to be fair to all parties involved.
 
If you have any queries about our fitness to  practise procedures or wish to raise a serious concern yourself about a dentist or dental care professional, please read our advice on raising concerns or contact us.
 
We also have advice for dental professionals facing a complaint.