Patients embrace online booking services

As a digital company, we are always interested in digital innovations and improved efficiency, especially in the dental sector. One area of dentistry that this is particularly apparent, is in the booking of dental appointments online. Although this is a relatively new sector, there are a number of companies who are improving access, customer service and ease for patients.

Toothpick who are one of the leaders of this revolution, shared some amazing numbers from 2014, which they have given us permission to share. The infograph below gives a great indication of the growth of the sector, can dental practices afford to miss out on offering this service?

A few stats that caught our attention:-

  • The fastest time from booking to seeing a dentist was 23 minutes
  • 56 per cent of bookings were made in evenings and weekends
  • Peak booking time for appointments is Monday and Tuesday mornings, when a booking is received every 30 seconds!
  • Over 60 per cent of visitors to Toothpicks website are accessing via a mobile device

We believe this sector will continue to grow over the next few years. Dentists are always looking for new ways to gain patients and offering 24hr online booking seems a great way of doing this. The general public are increasingly familiar with doing many things online, so why should booking a dental appointment be any different? The service seems to benefit all involved. The continued growth of smartphone usage, plus the introduction of dental practice apps or mobile webpages will also fuel the growth of this sector in 2015.

It will be interesting to see how this sector evolves over the next few years but our suspicion is that it will soon be an expected feature on the majority of dental practice websites, mobile sites or apps. 

Please enjoy looking at the infograph and you can find some further information on Toothpick below. 




Toothpick launched in the UK in 2013. Since then, one million people have used our booking technology and we've passed £17M worth of dentistry to our practices. We're leading the way in bringing medical bookings online, with over 50 per cent of appointments booked outside of our dental practices' opening hours, and 60 per cent via mobile devices.
Toothpick is now being rolled out in Holland, Australia, New Zealand and the United States.


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5922 Hits

Be of good cheer ...

Be of good cheer ...

2015… anticlimactic or more to come?

It been a funny old year.  As you sup your Christmas tot, you might perhaps take some time to reflect? Pull a chair up, let’s while away a minute. It’s cold outside, so would you be kind and throw a log on the fire?

For a profession that should really be quietly under the public radar, and in the state of a ship sailing steadily and smoothly, the waters have been mighty choppy this year.  The raging CQC currents have by and large subsided, while the torpedo of the ARF, allied to the air strike that is Medico Legal costs arising from the FtP debacle, was a direct hit.

Tears or Tiers?

The winds of NHS “Tiering” are gathering, and forecast is that a storm will develop around the Prototype Contracts which has yet to peak.  The UDA unfairness continues to block out the sun, especially for those of you who by whatever means have run out of UDAs for the last 3 months.

Great Deeds for Christmas?

The GDC have, shall we say, come to our attention this last year in an unprecedented way. The present leadership of the GDC have shown themselves to be arrogant, intransigent, out of touch, and in an irony befitting of their Standards document, utterly without a care in the world about the profession.

I hope you have not been in a time warp and that the events of the last few weeks have not passed you by.

The GDC now finds itself on the wrong end of a judgement at the High Court. Do not believe everything you read in their oh-so-friendly e-mails – honesty and transparency are two things woefully lacking in this broken organisation. However, they offer a level of Spin for which a former Prime Minister would be proud.

The time has come, the walrus said…

In answer to your question “What next?” I suggest you ALL whizz over to the petition at the link below to sign your support for the resignation of Mr Moyes and Ms Gilvarry.  It is you, my friends who will keep this agenda alive – please do your bit. Responsibility must be acknowledged and frankly after this last few months, there can be no other honourable way.

There are 36000 Dentists and if you do nothing else to support your profession this year, please sign it.  Unless of course you think the GDC are spot on and a fine example of public body efficiency…


Please visit https://www.change.org/p/gdc-gdc-leadership-resignations-needed-the-courts-and-profession-have-spoken

Better Deeds for All?  

Go’arn, go’arn, go’arn … you know you want to

But the BDA in contrast have risen to the challenge. If you are not a member, and can stretch to the additional cost, my commendation is at least throw them one year’s membership as a thank you for their action on your behalf. 


Because of their resistance to the GDC steamroller, a process has been started at the political level which, in my opinion, will likely see some change driven by ministers over the next year. If you did not see the debate raised by our colleague Sir Paul Beresford, it is worth an hour of vCPD to see Mr Dan Poulter the Minister state unequivocally that in his eyes the GDC were bang out of order! This is the link


A Christmas Truce?

As The Christmas season passes [and for those not so inclined, may it be an appropriately Festive one] it is time to stop worrying about matters dental and just chill out with your family & friends. If you are like me and prefer your own company, may the mountain that you climb offer perspective and energy. 

Perhaps we might find it in our hearts to wish all those at the GDC peace and goodwill.


So will 2015 quieten down?

We shall see. The agenda will change but it seems like there is much more to grab your attention on the way. To our young graduate colleagues, welcome to the funny farm and good luck coping with the massive changes that are brewing.


Be positive for 2015

Remember, the NHS is not the only outfit in town. Behind all the huff and puff of politics and the GDC qwankers1, private practice is a driving example of modern, efficient small business, focussed absolutely on patient care through a strong relationship with the dental team, offering a route to lifelong dental health aided by some amazing CAD CAM technology. Indeed the Good Ship SS Private Practice has been quietly sailing around all the politics and as any members of it ‘crew’ will tell you, when you sit down with your patient and start building trust, the rest of the world melts away.

If you have half an inkling to start a process of being less, or indeed NOT dependent on the Government for your business income, why not use the next couple of weeks to plan your first step. With all the changes afoot, allied to a certainty that there will be no more money when they demand extra activity from you, it’s the least you can do for your patients.

Life without the NHS actually makes tolerating the GDC a whole lot easier! And without NCAS and spurious GDC referrals, you will be a lot less likely to have your FtP day . Hurrah!!


So 2014 is a wrap.

To all my reader my thanks. To all of you, a peaceful end to the year and remember … they’re only teeth !  But they don’t ‘alf cause trouble, eh?


1                     http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Quanker

2                     Join the BDA at https://www.bda.org/strongertogether

3                     http://www.parliamentlive.tv/Main/Player.aspx?meetingId=16685&st=11:00:00


4                     Sign the petition seeking GDC Resignations at





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6812 Hits

December Opportunities on GDPUK.com


As we approach the final month of 2014, people start to wind down for the year and we all start looking at the year ahead. We focus on setting targets, goals, wishes and budgets for the year ahead.

Before you start looking too far into the future we thought we would let you know, that we have a small number of advertising opportunities on GDPUK in December.

Do you have a course you are looking to promote in early 2015?

A new product you have launched and you would like some extra promotion?

You may have December offers of your own that need a push?

Whatever your reason, we have a few spaces left on the site in December. Please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we may even surprise you with a festive price!

Did you know?

December has always been one of the busiest months on gdpuk. Dentists constantly use the forum and share expertise throughout the holiday period, which even includes Christmas day for some!

For further information
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
07786571547 / 0161 270 0453




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5231 Hits

The Tongue - Why?

The Tongue

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7486 Hits

How UK Dentists are Using the Internet & GDPUK

We have put together an infographic which shows how UK Dentists are using the internet. We have included some of the stats that were produced from the recent August 2014 GDPUK Survey. Thanks to all that took part. We have also added in some statistics from We Are Social which shows how addicted we are becoming to our smartphones  and social media in general! Thanks for reading.


Thanks to our friends Stockdale Martin for sending over some of the statistics. They are a healthcare marketing agency. Ed Stockdale can be contacted via email on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or followed on twitter.

If you are looking to reach thousands of dentists on a daily basis, our new GDPUK Media Pack for 2015 is now available! Please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will send it straight over. 

  5356 Hits
5356 Hits

Faster horses

Faster horses

“If we’d asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses”, Henry Ford is famously quoted as saying.

And this week we have news reports about the car insurance industry being subjected to further “market reforms” in order to deliver cheaper end-consumer prices.

But this is a fundamental misunderstanding of the markets.


If you look at the résumé of our first appointed chair of the General Dental Council [GDC], Bill Moyes, you will see that he has led several market-driven initiatives in various roles, and it wouldn’t be a leap of the imagination to consider that he has been appointed into the GDC to fulfil a “market-driven” reform. Dentistry has long suffered an image problem; consumers feel that prices (and pay) are too high, that dentistry delivers poor value to the consumer and that there is a conspiracy of the profession against the public – it is only necessary to have the briefest of reads through the comments section on any newspaper that publishes a dental article to see that the accusations of “rip-off” rear their head at a very early stage.

But this premise is entirely wrong. The problem with a free market is that the results are entirely unpredictable. Economic journals are full of perfectly logical explanations as to why markets behaved in a certain way – crucially, behaved and not behave. That is, the analysis of the markets and the rationality of them is done post hoc.

One of the most fundamental problems I can see with the approach of trying to manipulate markets in order to deliver a specific outcome is that it rarely works, or often, even where it does work, often this is not what the consumer demands or buys, although they may insist at the outset that that is what they want.

In our particular dental industry, I would hazard a guess that many people (of a non-dental nature) believe that market reforms will deliver cheaper dentistry, through increasing the supply of the dental workforce. I would suggest that this is unlikely to work for a variety of reasons. Firstly, costs represent some 60-70% of the price that the patient pays. Given that the average pay for dentists has been declining in real terms for some time, if we were to cut pay for dentists by 10%, then this can translate into only a 3-4% price saving for patients. And I don’t believe that we can cut pay much further without running into another economic problem – that of a shortage. If you pay too little for something, you create a shortage. In this case, how many dentists do you think would leave the profession if average pay drops below a certain point? (I would suggest £50,000 for associates, on average, and £75,000 for principals)

So if cost savings are to be made for the end consumer prices, this will have to come from reduced costs. And here we already have an idea of what happens from another industry – the British car industry. Throughout the 60s and 70s, the British car industry suffered a slow and agonising death over many years, selling outdated cars, with poor workmanship and a reputation for declining quality, and in some cases, with cars selling at less than the cost of manufacture. Do these problems sound familiar?

Of course the British car industry eventually collapsed, superceded by German and Japanese competitors who were operating on free market conditions, and produced innovation and rapid improvements in delivering things people wanted rather than what they told government-led focus groups that they wanted. The eventual death of Rover marked a turning point and renaissance of the British car industry, and now we have world class manufacturing and design, but for this to happen we had to see the government leave the industry and several companies to go under.

I sincerely hope that dentistry has its “Rover moment” soon. I believe in the free markets, but a belief in the free markets also means accepting when they don’t deliver quite what you thought they would. And that doesn’t always mean that what will be delivered will be cheaper: sometimes, what is delivered is “better” rather than “cheaper”. I believe that health and dentistry falls into this camp.

After all, when was the last time you saw a car maker advertise how cheap they’d made the braking system?

Free markets tend to deliver better healthcare, by and large, which is often but not always cheaper. I would therefore issue a challenge – if this is truly the purpose of Mr Moyes’ appointment, I would suggest that he can best serve the public by completely withdrawing any government interference in the market, but only on the proviso that he and they MUST accept that prices will almost certainly rise, but also must accept that this may result in longer term reduction of cost. Otherwise we run the risk of delivering the cheapest horses in the world when the rest of the world has moved onto cars.  



Image credit - Coen Dijkman  under CC licence - not modified.

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Recent comment in this post
Hershal Shah


Great first post. Just to add with this emphasis on markets, gorverning bodies and regulatory bodies must also be accountable to a... Read More
Sunday, 28 September 2014 21:46
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Networking, The Corner and Landing Pages

After a busy few summer months, we will soon be entering the final quarter of 2014. I have tried to keep my digital blogs varied and I hope you have continued to find them useful.
BDIA Dental Showcase
The annual dental showcase will this year be held at London Excel from the 9th -11th of October 2014. Exhibitions are always a great opportunity to network with other members of the dental profession and meeting with people face to face is always a varied and interesting experience. The GDPUK team will be visiting the show, talking to dentists and of course many of our key clients who will be exhibiting. Please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you would like to meet up and we can discuss how we can work or build a mutually beneficial partnership together.
I always look forward to the exhibitions because you never know who you will meet, get introduced to or what you will learn. I am sure it will be a fascinating few days. I look forward to meeting you in a few weeks.
Corner banner
For the month of September on GDPUK you will see a little “look” image (example above) in the top right hand corner of the page. This is a new feature we have introduced that will be available for advertisers when they have a promotion or new product to offer. When your mouse "hovers" over the look sign, an advert appears. We believe it is a great method for gaining plenty of visibility and attention. Please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you would like further information on this new feature.
Landing pages
A few months ago, I wrote about the importance of landing pages and how they are an integral part of your advertising campaign. The blogs can be found here and here. I thought I would remind you to read the blogs, especially with how it is so closely linked to a successful marketing campaign. I am often asked about how you can get good results from advertising on GDPUK and I believe having a consitent message alongside a well constructed landing page is incredibly important. 
Any emails sent out or landing pages created need to be simple and not too cluttered, make sure there is a clear focus on one thing. If you are offering an incentive or promotion, you have to make sure it is available and people can find it quickly on the landing page. The main aspect is that you have to stick to a clear and direct message when looking for customers and when an offer is made, make sure you deliver on it. This will lead to a greater return on your advertising investment and growth in your business. 
Thanks for reading and I look forward to meeting or bumping into you at the BDIA Showcase in a few weeks. 
  6276 Hits
6276 Hits

Immovable Object meets Irresistible Force

Immovable Object meets Irresistible Force

What happens when an Immovable Object meets an Irresistible Force?


Impasse. And so it would appear to have been for the last couple of weeks after the initial thrust of the BDA’s threats, and the parry and riposte of the GDC’s response.


However, I always thought it was going to be right at the end of the ‘consultation’ process that the BDA would make their next attack, and as we have seen yesterday, Mick Armstrong has told the GDC in no uncertain terms ‘ it’s 1 minute to midnight’. Waiting until the last minute has made sure the Judicial Review can’t be halted or paused to allow the consultation to finish, had it been launched prematurely and has made sure the GDC don’t get to see the BDA’s hand of cards early.


But this hasn’t actually seen the announcement of the BDA taking legal action to go to Judicial Review, and as such I bet a lot of people will be disappointed if they just look at this video superficially. I can see the posts on GDPUK forum that this is just BDA posturing again, and they haven’t the guts to carry out the threat.


But if you read the full press release as well as watching the video, and especially take time to look at the additional information within the release regarding the figures in the consultation, it is obvious the BDA are actually giving the GDC a final chance to back down. The GDC will suffer a humiliating loss of face if they do, but we as registrants and members won’t then have to foot both sets of legal bills.


I don’t get the impression Mick Armstrong is messing about when he says the BDA are committed to following this through. But as a fellow Yorkshireman I appreciate the sporting nature of letting your opponents know you’re going to hit them, hard, and give them a final chance to back down. But you only do that once you know you have the upper hand. The BDA might not have a Royal Flush, but it seems like the GDC only has a pair of Jokers at the moment. Reading the documents attached to the BDA’s submission leaves one in no doubt of the intention of the BDA to go to JR.


By engaging the services of a FORENSIC accountancy company the BDA appear to have pulled off a masterstroke; utilizing the skills of professionals specializing in detecting high level fraud, regulatory scrutiny and anti-corruption, and then publishing a précis of the findings publically must surely send the a big signal to the GDC that the BDA is not playing brinkmanship here, but actually means business. This is serious stuff now, and the BDA have now shown their cards to the GDC by revealing financial inconsistencies are what the JR will probably be based on.  


The forensic analysis of the accounts has apparently shown the GDC’s own published figures for the ARF hike are somewhat contradictory. These inconsistencies not only call into question the validity of the need for the ARF increase by questioning the basic level of evidence, but the inconsistency of the figures must surely now call into question the bigger picture of the integrity of the GDC in all of its financial matters. Whether this is part of the Judicial Review or not, the financial matters of the GDC must be impeccable, and they appear not to be.


The analysis of the figures would appear to go beyond the fact insufficient and inconsistent information has been given to registrants so they can’t actually make an informed response to the consultation. It seems to confirm the GDC is actually so contemptuous of us as intelligent people that they feel they can knowingly release confusing figures, expect us to then swallow the ARF rise, (after what we have all agreed is a sham consultation) and carry on as before. If a dentist were to confuse a patient in that manner, it would be cause for a registrant to be hauled before the GDC. Alternatively, it suggests incompetency and a lack of communication in the organizational structure of the GDC. Once again, they are grounds for a registrant to appear before the regulator. Whichever way you look at it (and it may be a combination of the two), our professional association appears to now have more robust evidence of the failings of the regulator and is prepared to act on it.


However since the GDC’s regulator is the PSA, and they seem to be about as threatening as a periodontally compromised 3 legged chihuahua with trismus and a sore throat, and as much use as a pair of waterproof sandals then you can’t really blame the GDC for not being too worried about the consequences of their actions.


Judging by the interview with Ms Gilvarry in Dentistry magazine, she doesn’t have appeared to understand what the profession is finding such a problem with. The penny certainly hasn’t dropped with her; perhaps this is because there aren’t actually any spare pennies left to drop at the GDC since their accounts seem to be in such a tangle.


But surely there must now be a realization by at least someone in power at the GDC that the BDA and the profession as a whole just might have a point. It would be useful if it dawned on them simultaneously that they have picked a fight with what seems to be a quickly developing Irresistible Force.


And they as the Immovable Object appear to have some ominous cracks developing, which wouldn’t do them a lot of good if they continue on the course they seem hell bent on taking…….



Image credit - James Cridland  under CC licence - not modified.

  10112 Hits
10112 Hits

Yo. The next chapter of Communication?

Yo is a relatively new app that over the last few months has been at the top of the iOS App Store.
Or Arbel, a thirty two year old app developer from Tel Aviv, Israel, had an idea for a new app and within eight hours he had created "YO." The app has received USD$1 million in investment from a group of investors led by Moshe Hogeg, CEO of Mobli, who had originally asked Arbel to design a single-button app to call his assistant. “It’s not just an app that says Yo,” says Mr Arbel. “It’s a whole new means of communication.”
You have probably heard of it over the last few months. Simple ideas often work the best and this is messaging without the messages! All you can do is send a friend a notification that says “Yo” It has really started to take off and now millions of messages have been sent, over he course of 3 months as friends experiment with and send each other a "Yo".
Already a Yo Index is building - http://www.yoindex.com/. So as a user you can subscribe to an account eg the Chelsea goal account. Every time Chelsea score, the subscriber will receive a “Yo”.
Jonny's top 4 uses for Yo;
  1. Let someone know you are outside their house waiting in the car. Just send them a "Yo".
  2. Thinking of that special someone, send them a "Yo".
  3. Your chinese takeaway is ready, you receive a "Yo" and go to pick it up.
  4. Tell a patient in your surgery that you are ready to see them now! Or is that taking things to far?
In the modern era, we are drowned in a range of communication tools, whether it is email, twitter or snapchat. Is this a brilliant way of cutting down on communication and getting right to the point, or will this app disappear into the wilderness? Let me know your thoughts.
Why don’t you download it this weekend and find out for yourself.... 
Further info / blogs
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5640 Hits

Preparing for Friends and Family Test

Preparing for Friends and Family Test

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4865 Hits

To rant or not to rant ?

To rant or not to rant ?

That is indeed a question!!

Phew, what a scorcher

If you think the meteorological heat is oppressive, you want to try working in Wimpole Street. AirCon does nothing to relieve the heat of the pressure the GDC should be feeling.

What interesting, perhaps desperate times we live in.

The world is awash with wildfire wars with all the suffering that ensues.  The state of children’s teeth of those who do not ‘get’ the dental health message in this country remains an unresolved scandal.  Contract Reform of NHS Dentistry in England has become a fictional event of the future. The CDO England must be playing a lot of golf these days because there is naff all else going on. Dento-legal indemnity has started to rise in cost alarmingly as  the GDC and it’s woeful Fitness to Practise regime comes off the wheels.

But it takes a proposed rise in ARF to really galvanise the profession in a unanimous outpouring of anger.


Well directed anger?

This is being expressed in many ways – letters to MP’s, the professional Standards Authority, letters to the GDC allied to Freedom of Information requests to name but a few.  At meetings, the conversation is grim and consistent – it’s the GDC innit?

Even our old muckers the BDA have bared some teeth which, to judge by their public statements, are finally sharp enough to threaten injury.

What is happening so far can be summarised as a collective professional rant.  There is nothing wrong with that.  This process of ‘ranting’ is a precursor to something much more effective

It is well know that RANT is actually an acronym


The RANT acronym


  • Review your position
  • Analyse your options for Action
  • Notify interested parties of impending Action
  • Take action


Where are we?

I think we are heading out toward the last element, if only driven by the timescale.

A request for legal review, a BDA driven legal challenge, and protesting by payment in cash at the front desk of the GDC are just some of the actions being proposed.  What about resignation of a significant cadre of the dentists they need to make the processes and systems function?


What about calling for the resignation of the Dental Professional GDC members en masse?  It certainly seems to have merit.


Will the ARF be less than proposed? My money says “yes”


Will we see heads roll at the GDC?  The CEO, Ms Gilvarry for example? Its hard to see how her position can possibly remain tenable.  She certainly has lost our confidence, but I would imagine the GDC staff are pretty low as well.

What about our new appointed Chairman, Mr William Moyes?  His condescending e-mail to registrants allied to his Pendlebury Lecture suggest a level of isolation and ignorance that make you wonder how he ever got the job.  Based on his utterances so far, he simply does not get it.  Based on the lack of communication by the GDC’s Dental Professional members, I thinks its safe to assume the GDC has battened down the hatches and GDC Council Members are prevented from public comment. So much for transparency.  The ARF was not even an agenda item at the GDC Council meeting of 24 July.


Problem?  What problem?

The GDC have absolutely lost the confidence of the profession.  The have proved themselves to be the most incompetent of Regulatory bodies, and they are asking us to pay for their ineptitude.


The short answer Madam Chief Executive and Mr Chairman is “NO – NOT ON OUR WATCH”


You fix your problems first and we might talk then .

Until then, we will continue with the biggest professional RANT seen for many years.

Once again I profess my grateful thanks for the GDC’s role in uniting the profession, finally.


Enjoy your break people. Be assured, the heat will still be turned up when you return.

Yours, rantingly :)

  5939 Hits
5939 Hits

Dental angst pours out on social media

Dental angst pours out on social media

Social Media outpouring from UK dentists, against GDC ARF rise, July 2014.


Since news emerged at the very end of June that the General Dental Council [GDC]  was planning to raise its annual retention fee [ARF] from £576 to £945 per year for all dentists in the United Kingdom.  This coincided with an announcement of a consultation on the matter of this fee, yet the fait accompli of the rise proposed was publicised.

GDC maintains a register of all dentists working in the UK, and it remains illegal to practice any form of dentistry without this registration. This monopoly held by the dental profession is there to protect the public from imposters, and despite this serious registration process there are always queues of impending prosecutions of people who feel they can practice forms of dentistry without a degree, training, nor the proper registration and indemnity cover.

Dentists are livid and united about this unprecedented rise in costs by an increasingly out of touch, unjust body.

It appears the large rise has been caused by the exponential increase in complaints against dentists administered by the GDC, a very stressful process for dentists who remain innocent until findings are proven. GDC accepts cases, investigates, and will proceed with a risk to the professional future of a dentist even if there is a single incident of complaint. This wall of actions has led to delays and blockages in the GDC processes, something dentists are finding unacceptable, and this is one of the factors behind the social media congregations in the last 48 hours.

GDPUK has had a large rise in visitors, one thread on the topic has had over 90 replies from dentists within 36 hours of the first posting on the topic. Twitter has been ablaze, and on Facebook, one page, The Project, in which dentist Prem-Pal Sehmi has commenced a campaign for colleagues to pay £576 when the ARF becomes due next December has attracted more than 2400 colleagues on Facebook, also within a very short time frame. [At the time of writing]














On twitter this image shows the sort of exchange progressing. The profession is like a bear which has been poked in the eye too many times, says Eddie Crouch of the BDA PEC and Birmingham LDC.


On the Government’s e-petitions page, Dr Vereen Gupta commenced a petition on the matter, and within 24 hours, this has over 5,500 signatories.



Statistics emerging on GDPUK show that the anger is derived from this rise in Fitness to Practice [FtP] cases, which GDC figures state are stand at 3,700 presently. There are around 24,000 dentists in general practice now, so almost 15% have a case against them. Foir na serious and learned profession, this alone shows the system is very wrong.

The Professional Standards Authority, which oversees the GDC, has reported its grave concerns with the running and governance of GDC, which seems to roll along, unfettered.

All the groups must unite and harness the energy being generated on this matter, so it is up to BDA, Facebook groups, GDPUK, Twitter devotees to keep up the pressure, ensure this campaign goes to the heart of its target.





  9946 Hits
9946 Hits

The importance of an effective landing page

The importance of an effective landing page

Landing Pages

Part1...The importance of an effective landing page

GDPUK.com earns revenue from banner ads, we display adverts from companies looking to attract dentists as customers. The most successful banners, direct the user to a specific landing page. A good landing page should be seen as a part of your sales team, in the first part of this series I have listed some thoughts on the importance of an effective landing page.

A landing page is a web page that allows you to capture a visitor’s information through a lead-capture form. These are often known as a conversion form.

Landing pages are created to convert traffic into qualified leads. If you can focus on converting visitors into leads, landing pages are all about positive ROI. This is where a good landing page can make all the difference.

So why are landing pages important?

  • They help you focus on conversion. The focus has to be on converting visitors into leads. A few simple ideas could be contact details for a free white paper, or contact details for a sample of your product.
  • Direct. By using a landing page you will start to find that a landing page can be more effective than just directing traffic to a homepage, which is likely to be a waste of time. Once someone makes the effort to click on a banner, if the landing page matches what is on the banner, the odds of converting the click into a lead will increase dramatically.
  • Generation of leads. If an effective page is created, it is suddenly a lot easier to capture leads. Every time a lead completes a conversion form on a landing page your sales team collects valuable information. Obviously this is a great for the sales team, as they are receiving warm leads to target.
  • The more the better. Once you start creating a range of landing pages for different offers, the more opportunities you will create to convert visitors into leads.
  • Makes the expenditure on advertising worthwhile. The landing page should sell your product; the language on the landing page needs to be customised and persuasive to your target audience. If you are creating specific ads (which many GDPUK clients do) then it is pointless if you’re only going to send potential customers in the direction of your homepage.

I hope this blog gives you an idea of the importance of a landing page and how getting it right can lead to an increase in revenue. Advertising online is something we are all still learning about, but we believe by investing in your landing page, it is a great start to achieving a return from your online advertising.

For further information on how we can help with the marketing of your brand or product or to learn how we can help with a landing page for your advert, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

We will publish part two of this series next week, which will give you some ideas of the key features of an effective landing page

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5580 Hits

Dentistry embraces the Internet of Things

Dentistry embraces the Internet of Things

Recently in the technology & digital world there has been a lot of talk about the “Internet of Things”.  The IoT is a scenario in which objects, animals or people are provided with unique identifiers and the ability to automatically transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction. This has evolved from the coming together of wireless technology, modern electronics and of course the internet.

So examples of the internet of things in the real world are a phone connected watch, Google glasses or a fridge that tells you when you are low on milk. The ideas and opportunities are endless, any natural or man-made object, as long as it is assigned with an IP address and has the ability to transfer data over a network becomes a part of the Internet of Things.

Yesterday I went to a press launch by Oral-B at the BDA Conference. Oral-B will be introducing a new electric toothbrush to the market in May 2014. What caught my attention is the fact that it will have Bluetooth built in and will connect to its own app. This means that your tooth brushing can be recorded and even checked by your dentist to make sure you are accessing the correct areas. This recording of data will personalise your brushing routine and will also allow the dental professional to programme their patients’ brushing routines in the app to improve brushing behaviours & techniques. Oral-B claim this will help drive patient compliance, which determines success of a large part of future dental appointments.


So not only will this innovation potentially improve oral health it is also a great example of an everyday appliance working alongside the internet and being an early adopter of the “internet of things”. I believe this could be an exciting development in dentistry and shows plenty of innovation. We look forward to seeing how the app will develop plus also it got us thinking about what will be the next piece of dental technology that improves patient care and improves the daily routine? Any ideas?

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9331 Hits

Dental Economics

Dental Economics

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4911 Hits

Challenge re-emerges

Challenge re-emerges

Chief Dental Officer for England issues a ‘Call to Action’ to the dental profession to help find workable solutions to the contractual problems that have beset the NHS general dental service since the introduction of the last set of contractual changes in 2006.

You’re a bit late getting to the party, Barry, but now you are here you will be pleased to know that your old adversaries CHALLENGE have been resurrected and are looking forward to joining a robust debate alongside you.

Barry, you will remember, but for those who are too young to recall, CHALLENGE was a political pressure group set up in the wake of the 2006 contract debacle. They argued long and strong for major changes early in the life of the new contracts. They even made a significant appearance in front of a Parliamentary Health Select Committee back in 2008. The three founder members were Eddie Crouch, John Renshaw and Ian Gordon. These are well known names with a long track record of standing up for GDPs in the one-sided battle with the Department of Health. The same three professional leaders are still the face of CHALLENGE.

The call for action from the CDO provides us dentists with quite an intriguing headline, especially coming from one of the most obdurate supporters of the status quo. Barry Cockcroft comes to the vexatious arguments over the way the NHS GDS and its various contractual formats work for patients and for dentists after telling anyone who would listen - for years on end - that the service is in great shape and patients are deliriously happy with the way they are treated.

Well, if Barry wants to hear from the profession, CHALLENGE is willing to take up the cudgels once again to promote and articulate the message we hear coming from all the GDPs we listen to on a regular basis. In the near future we will be running our own listening exercise to gather up data on how you see the contract and how you feel you have fared in the eight years since it began. We also need to know your concerns about the pilots being run at the moment and the possible shape of a new service that may emerge.

If we as a profession are to make any real impact other than making a lot of noise and blowing out a lot of hot air, we need your input to validate what we are saying. When that chance comes along please take the few moments it will require to put down, for our benefit and for the benefit of all your colleagues, exactly how you feel about the situation you find yourself in.

If Barry wants action, CHALLENGE says let’s give it to him!!


John Renshaw



Twitter @ChallengeDoH

Challenge on Facebook 



  5986 Hits
5986 Hits

Crunch week

Crunch week

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power.
Abraham Lincoln


Ok its crunch week, and the quote I have used here seems apposite to the issues at stake in Wimpole Street this Friday, 21st Febrary.

The Probe carries its coverage of the Big Lie discussions which carry on from  Dr Kilcoyne’s leading campaign . The letter in the Daily Telegraph stirred the waters.

The effect of The Probe is to relight the fires of this burning issue in a very welcome manner. The consistent spin of the official replies is becoming eye crossing.

There is general worry that the tripartite comfy zone that is the table around which the BDA, the DH and NHS England sit is looking increasingly as though it is actually a defensive set up to protect their interests, at the cost the care of the patient by dentists.

And so this Friday, as BDA Members YOU have a chance to make YOUR voice heard.

If you cannot attend this EGM, please ensure you vote by proxy. Crack on now because it is a carefully defined legally binding process.  You cannot just phone a mate the day before.

Now is the chance to fire up your Representative Association.  Put a rocket up their collective arses if you will.

There will not be a second chance before Contract Reform hits you between the eyes.

It is a well worn quote of Napoleon Hill, but still, it applies.

“Whatever you want, oh discontented man, step up, pay the price – and take it.”

Good luck to our illustrious and historic Profession – it is not too dramatic to say that a large part of the future of the present generation of GDPs hangs on what happens this Friday.

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6375 Hits

The Rule of 10%

I told you January was interesting …

First we have a BDA EGM on the cards. Anyone who reads tea leaves must be thinking Friday 21st of February is the new Ides of March. While the BDA turns in on itself in what some might see as a death roll, the world moves on and, boy, how fast!

The DFT numbers have been formally announced – see the link – and the big picture?  1 in 5 students have not got a job to look forward to – nice motivation if you can get it – NOT!  Approximately 240 out the UK Graduate bag of about 1100 have been ‘placed on a “Reserve List” I say approximately – the numbers are not entirely clear even if the big picture is.   What’s that – about 10% in the end? well, give or take.

Have we all been witness to a Coup d’Etat in dentistry – CoPDenD have quietly become the most influential body in dentistry. If you are a student on the receiving end, it must feel like a very unfair and cruel arbitrary selection process.

You know what sucks?  It is clear that CoPDenD would have you believe that the NHS and it’s public funding is the only kid on the block. They saw off Private Vocational Training and now have a monopoly grip on the peri-graduation phase of ones career. Is it me or does CoPDenD have a funny smell around it?

The size of the private dental market is now likely bigger than all of the NHS dental funding for dental care, both primary and secondary.

So why is there not a flourishing private-public partnership in dentistry in which the shortfalls of NHS funded DFT are more than taken up by a commercial organisation?  If ever an opportunity for the FGDP to do something practical ever has been missed this must be it.  I’ll bet if SERCO or Compass were bidding, Private VT would be up and  running by now.

And now ... midway though a Manpower Review at the Higher Education Funding body…  the word on the block  is that a blanket 10% student cut across the board has been enacted with immediate effect.  The Twittersphere is lighting up this week as the well  hinted cuts are finally publicised.

Perversely, that actually sounds like some form of a solution.  Fewer graduating dentists are an inevitable consequence of reduced Government funding. Since we all know the Government IS broke, maybe this 10% cut will be in ADDITION to the chopping of two dental schools, which is being widely trawled.

That will in 2 years mean a broad reduction of about 270 students per annum - job done, CoPDenD’s DFT books balanced.

But where is the drive to use the vibrant private market to create educational opportunities which support and supplement the NHS funded basic training? Lots of willing weekenders but no structure.

In its small way, dentistry is now witnessing the effects of lack of public funding. If the profession of dentistry is a thermometer for public finances, the mercury is falling.  So be it. Can’t spend what we don’t have.  It is not entirely unexpected after all

But there is a £7Bn, and growing,  private market for dentistry.   In fact, year on year growth of 10% and more is anticipated.

There has to be a better way.  The big picture of publicly funded dentistry is gaining a degree of focus.  We need to ensure that private dentistry builds its own big picture, and fast.

How? By whom?

Questions a’plenty. Answers on a postcard please!  If 10% of you reply…

See you soon people. How much more news can there be?







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7323 Hits

The UK Dental Calendar has arrived!

The UK Dental Calendar has arrived!

GDPUK Launches UK Dental Calendar


At the beginning of the year, we launched a new feature on the GDPUK Site. This feature is the “Dental Calendar”. The Dental Calendar will be a central area for everyone from the dental profession to know what is taking place in the world of UK Dentistry. 

As long as you are signed into the site, anyone from the profession can add events, seminars, training and exhibitions to the Event List. We believe this is an exciting addition to the dental landscape. Firstly it is a great way of promoting an event and secondly it makes the profession aware of events taking place close to them or that there is a specific course taking place, that potentially they would not have been aware of.  We hope it can become a really handy resource for the dental community.

How to use?

Once logged into the site, the dental calendar tab drops down to offer the option of “adding an event” as the image below demonstrates.

Once the tab is clicked you can then add the event by following the form, which is easy to use and should only take a matter of minutes. Pictures, the date and location are simple to enter. Once added the event is then added to the event list and can be viewed by the whole dental community.

Currently events can be shared on Twitter and Google plus, which means that you can publicise the event to the wider dental world.

Going forward we will also use the twitter handle of @DentalCalendar to publicise when something is added to the calendar. Please get following!

Future Use?

The calendar will take some time to become established and used widely. Once it is used regularly, we envisage the calendar being used in a number of ways. 

  • Featured events – for a small fee, organisations could feature their event on the calendar and ensure it gets maximum exposure.
  • Ticket Sales – Places on courses could be booked and paid for on the GDPUK Site. GDPUK would act as a ticket agent and help an organisation with the sales of the tickets to a particular event.
  • Specific Banner Adverts – There is an opportunity for a dental organisation to sponsor / associate their business with the calendar. To discuss the opportunity further please get in contact with This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • For the upcoming Contract Reform Roadshow in Manchester on the 30th Jan, the dentists attending have been registering through the GDPUK Site. This has so far attracted a few hundred registrations, a figure that is continually rising. More information can be found here about the roadshow. Feel free to register. 

Thanks for reading about the dental calendar. We hope you enjoy using the calendar. If you have any feedback about the calendar or have any further questions. Please get in touch. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

To register for the largest dental community in the UK and full use of the calendar, please follow this link - https://www.gdpuk.com/forum/user/register

  6744 Hits
6744 Hits

Can imbalances remain unresolved?

Can imbalances remain unresolved?

This period of low interest rates in the UK combined with changes in society and demographics have had some long term effects which are far from coming to roost. Since the financial collapses of 2008, UK Government policies have been to minimize the economic shock; people have been protected by saving the banks from failure and also by continuing low interest rates. 

History tells us that economic policies designed to insulate from short term shock tend to come with a long term consequences. But no-one has thought about a cohort affected more badly by this economic effect, hard working young adults. They have to deal with high property prices and high rents, less secure employment together with rock bottom interest rates if they manage to save, but high interest rates if they have credit card or pay day debts.

Will there be friction between the younger generation whose lives are markedly different from their parents in so many ways? There hasn't been a revolution or even a rebellion, just a combination of changes of circumstance in society at large – greater access to further education, starting careers later on average, starting families later, so many important aspects of life have been shifted by a few years.

One piece of good economic news in the UK, along with growth of the economy, has been the gradual fall in the employment rate in late 2013 and early 2014. However, in UK dentistry, this seems to be in reverse, through unintended consequences, and the combination of many seemingly unaccountable people acting in what they think is the right way, but having a terrible effect on the lives of young dental graduates.

In our dental profession we are now seeing, possibly for the first time in history, unemployment of newly qualified dental professionals. What is now known as the Dental Foundation Training [DF1] scheme, which was commenced as an educational process to help young graduates move to the pressures of working as a trusted professional from those of a dental student. This scheme has now, over many years, become a requirement that dental graduates must complete before they can do any work within the NHS. They have to have a "performer number", obtained by joining then completing this scheme. 

Interestingly, graduates of dentistry from the EU do not have to gain this requirement in order to work in the NHS. However, in the present national foundation dentistry scheme, EU dental graduates have equal standing with UK graduates, and each year some of those from the UK miss out, and cannot work. They may reapply but can only enter the recruitment process twice. After that, if they fail to get through an interview and psychometric assessments, they can have no future career in NHS dentistry EVER.

In the interview process which started in November 2013, with results issued in mid January with no fanfare nor press release, it is estimated [and this is a SHOCKING figure] that more than 10% of UK dental graduates have been left with no employment next summer when they graduate.

What a waste of studying, hours of hard work and sacrifice. Students these days live from loans, those qualifying presently have student debts around £30,000 with potentially no prospect of working in dentistry. Last year, tuition fees rose to £9,000 per annum, so those qualifying soon will have debts of £60,000 or more, yet carry this risk of not having a job when they pass their university examinations and graduate. A further insult is the 18 month rule, where applicants have two chances to apply and go through the process. If then unsuccessful, the artificial rule that bars them from following their career in the UK adds to the injustice.

In addition, this pre-judgment of their chance of a career is insulting and morale sapping, to say the least, before even sitting for their final exams, which seems to relegate those exams, which are the true arbiter of whom is fit to practice, not this FD1 assessment.

Dental colleagues rightly ask where is the British Dental Association in all this? Cannot the dental schools do something – teams of staff there must be angrier than GDPs. And what about COPDEND, who administer this – you must know what is going on? Why can someone take the problem by the horns and change something to benefit UK dental graduates and exclude EU nationals qualifying elsewhere in the EU? Even if you believe there is a risk of breaking an EU law, surely that is better than wrecking the careers and morale of hundreds of young dentists, prejudging the results of their university finals?

The inter-generational friction I referred to earlier might surface in the dental school. Morale must have been affected by this unjust system, university staff must feel that action must be taken for the sake of those they educate. 

This is now the third year of this disastrous situation – something must be done, someone must take responsibility, and make the system fair for UK dental students.


  1. COPDEND DF1 Policy statement: http://www.copdend.org/content.aspx?Group=foundation&Page=foundation_policystatement
  2. GDPUK forum discussion: https://www.gdpuk.com/forum/gdpuk-forum/vt-national-recruitment-process-opens-9971 [this page requires a GDPUK login]



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Recent comment in this post
Andrew Adey

Someone tried...

I gather that a group of private dentists attempted to organise a privately run version of foundation training, to no avail. It`s ... Read More
Thursday, 23 January 2014 11:21
9747 Hits

GDPUK Appears on Daybreak

A survey on NHS Dentistry which was hosted by GDPUK was featured this morning on the ITV Daybreak breakfast programme. 

This morning (16th January 2014) a survey that was run on the GDPUK forum for the ITV Daybreak Programme was featured as headline news. Link to the ITV news story can be found here and the GDPUK News story here.

Daybreak contacted GDPUK a few days ago and we were able to get the survey posted to the forum within a number of hours. The survey was run in response to the letter posted by Dr Tony Kilcoyne BDS  in the Daily Telegraph a couple of weeks ago, on the “Big Lie”. Only NHS Dentists were able to complete the survey and 340 NHS Dentists, who are all GDPUK members, responded to the survey. This was an amazing response from the GDPUK community and shows firstly this topic is an area many dentists care deeply about and secondly how an online community make things happen on a short time span.  Thirdly it also shows the large audience that GDPUK attracts, the thread announcing the survey has had nearly 900 views and 58 replies within a few days!

The debate and discussion of the state of NHS Dentistry still has a long way to go but we feel proud that we have been involved in the formation of the “Big Lie” letter and also running the survey that was then featured on National TV news this morning. Thanks to Dr Tony Kilcoyne BDS and also the whole GDPUK community who continue to contribute to the forum on a daily basis. We feel it is a great example of a small social media platform, utilising the power of the digital world.

The GDPUK forum is free to join for all dentists and members of the dental profession. Please register here

If you would like to find out how you can engage with this dental community further, please get in touch with This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Video coverage of Tony Kilcoyne on the Daybreak couch can now be viewed here

  6173 Hits
6173 Hits

Nine Hundred & Fifty Eight


After some number crunching over the holiday period we were proud to discover that in 2013, the GDPUK forum had 958 different contributors. The fact that just under a thousand different members of the dental community have “put their head above the parapet“ during the year on the forum pages is a fantastic sign of the growth of the forum and the number of subjects that provide discussion in UK Dentistry.

Moving into 2014, we now have thousands of members who are part of the community. With just under a thousand people posting last year, there were thousands on the sidelines who quietly read the posts. They represent the silent majority who we can see in every community, they are part of it, they enjoy it, but they don’t get involved. If you would like to join the GDPUK community, please follow this link. The forum is free to join for all members of the dental profession. You will find the forum is a fantastic resource for advice, opinion and information on UK Dentistry.

Overall in 2013, we averaged 3300 visits a day to the site, the equivalent of the number of people who visit a UK Dental Exhibition in a day. The difference is that we are getting those numbers every day of the year! The site continues to publish exclusive news and shape the agenda of UK Dentistry. For example, GDPUK was used as a sounding board to compose the letter that was recently published in the Daily Telegraph - http://bit.ly/JKkA3J

GDPUK is free for dentists or dental professionals to join. The site earns revenue from dental focused organisations advertising on the forum, news, blogs or daily digest emails. If you would like to find out more about the advertising opportunities, please get in This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Thanks for everyone’s support and help in 2013, please continue to contribute, share and discuss all things dental. We look forward to an excellent 2014 for all and well over a thousand contributors to the GDPUK Forum!


If you would like to register for the site please follow this link - https://www.gdpuk.com/forum/user/register

To refer a colleague or friend to the site - https://www.gdpuk.com/more/refer-a-colleague-to-gdpuk

For information on how to advertise on GDPUK or to download a media pack - https://www.gdpuk.com/overview or alternatively please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. who will be happy to help. We will also be visiting the Dentistry Show on Friday 28th February, please get in touch if you would like to meet up and have a coffee. 

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5439 Hits

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