Senior College members took part in a recent panel discussion on the question of ‘How do we support and retain our workforce and ensure that they have the right skills to meet future challenges?’.

The discussion covered skills development both for the individual and across the profession, the importance of teamwork to staff retention, making great places to work, supporting team members to manage stress, and preventing career burn out. Speaking on behalf of the College, Dr Abhi Pal FCGDent, then President, and Dr Debbie Reed FCGDent, Board Chair of the CGDent Faculty of Dental Nursing and Orthodontic Therapy, also pressed home the need for recognised Career Pathways for all members of the dental team, and the vital role of mentoring as part of the solution for addressing workforce retention issues. The other panel members were Dr Catherine Tannahill MCGDent, Director of Clinician Engagement of Portman Dental, and Dr Dhru Shah, CEO of Dentinal Tubules.

The session was part of a meeting of dental leaders from across the UK, which was held in London on 14 March on the theme of ‘Maintaining an effective workforce fit for the future’. The day also included a panel discussion on the government’s ‘Recovery Plan’ for NHS dentistry in England, and presentations from Andrea Sutcliffe CBE, Chief Executive of the Nursing and Midwifery Council, on role, values and culture; from Ashley Byrne FCGDent, Board Member of the Dental Laboratories Association, on the challenges facing dental technology; from Theresa Thorp, GDC Executive Director for Regulation, who provided insights from the GDC’s work pattern data exercise; and from Stefan Czerniawski, GDC Executive Director for Strategy, on provisional registration.  

The ‘Dental Leadership Network’ is convened quarterly by the General Dental Council to facilitate shared ownership in addressing key challenges facing the profession.

Dr Pal commented:

“The formation of the Dental Leadership Network is a positive step in bringing together key stakeholders and leaders within the profession to discuss current issues.”

Stefan Czerniawski said:  

“It’s really valuable for leaders across the dental sector to invest time in discussing the shared issues that affect us all and, most importantly, patients. Collaboration and ownership only works if the whole of the dental world is engaged.”

Sign up to our newsletter