Enamel Prism

4 minutes reading time (718 words)

One Small Step

One Small Step

So…  we learnt today that the Chief Executive and Registrar of the GDC is to step aside.  What is it you hear said? The longer the name of the job …  Hmmm.

By all means have fun deciding whether she jumped or was pushed.   Enjoy heating the invisible ink in order to read between the lines of the Press Releases.  Savour if you will the exchange of pleasantries between the Chairman, Dr Moyes and Ms Gilvarry which suggest that there may have been little love lost. 

Is it me or was there an undertone of glorious victory from the Chairman?  A bijou hint of “OK that’s over, let’s move on”.


What now?


The problems with the GDC remain three fold


The financial aspect.


The GDC seem to assume that the funding of the ARF can be an unlimited remit, a bottomless pit of registrant’s cash.  Nowhere in the Strategic Plan, for example [being celebrated rather rudely by Dr Moyes in almost the same sentence as his “goodbye wave” to the CEO] is the concept raised of budget cuts, or reduction of budget.

Indeed at the Dental Complaints Service, a reduction in complaints is seen as a crisis needing management to bring the numbers back up by advertising.  Only an arrogant Quango could possibly see things this way.

This of course is in the context of department cuts and harsh realities of reducing public funds.

The sense of aloofness and insulation from the realities of the world mark the GDC out.  They arrogantly march on ignoring the realities of day to day financial life for the dentists.

Unless the new CEO comes in with a wholly different attitude I see little chance of change.  It is the Council and the Chairman who will design the ‘essential skills’ matrix.  It is they who will determine the job requirement.

The Council and The Chairman must now, of necessity, come under immediate and decisive pressure from the profession.


The regulatory aspect.


The problems of the GDC are in simple terms their reluctance to recognise and classify complaints properly at the early stages. FtP and the appalling costs are driven by too many single patient complaints, in which over-zealous Expert Witnesses [colleagues by any other name] encourage the GDC legal teams to generate charge lists which if they were not so serious for the Registrant, would read like a copy of the Beano.  Lets remember: the present CEO has been in cahoots with the Chairman to create a Complaints Handling Agency - a far cry from an efficient regulator with its eye on patient safety.

Proper classification of incoming complaints does not need a Section 60 order – this needs a CEO to understand Dentistry. Only if our new CEO understands Dentistry will we stand a chance of having a CEO who understands a Dental Complaint.  Only then can a CEO classify at the early stage complaints which should be managed out of the GDC and those which are truly FtP matters.

Unless the new CEO brings a wholly different level of dental knowledge I see little chance of change.  The Council and the Chairman will design the ‘essential skills’ matrix.

I say again: The Council and The Chairman must now, of necessity, come under immediate and decisive pressure from the profession.


The unresolved business.


Can we expect a new CEO to take a different view on the matter of publication of addresses?  Can we expect true transparency and full public domain records for Interim Orders?  Can we expect a reduction in ARF?  Can we expect it to be become permissible to employ nurses out with the over-priced and over burdensome system of registration?


A skirmish, maybe, but there is more


It seems to me that the resignation of the Ms Gilvarry may be regarded as a decisive moment.

But the problem remains the Council and their Chairman. Six of those are Registrants.

Now is the time for them to consider their true loyalties as they write up the Job Specification for the new CEO.

Wow, imagine of the six registrant members were now to tender their own resignations in order to effect complete change at the GDC?

I think our representative bodies – the BDA, FGDP, and DPL / MDU / MDDUS – have their goal now.



The only effective change for the GDC will involve the departure of the poisoned and ineffective Chairman.  Anything else will look very watered down and leave too many questions unanswered.


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