Pilot underway for new Mouth Cancer Screening Accreditation Scheme

“A thorough head and neck cancer screening can be carried out by Dentists in just 2 minutes.  Every dental practice should be doing it!”

Dr Vinod Joshi.  Founder, the Mouth Cancer Foundation

Today, more than a hundred dentists from fifty dental practices across the UK will start the Mouth Cancer Screening Accreditation Pilot Scheme. 

The scheme, which is supported by Henry Schein, DPAS and ProDentalCPD, is the brainchild of Dr Vinod Joshi, Founder of the Mouth Cancer Foundation.  It will recognise dental practices that demonstrate a visible commitment to increasing public awareness of mouth cancer screening to all patients and to establish a documented referral pathway with a local specialist department.

The practices who have signed up to take part in the pilot will start the annual membership programme today ahead of the official launch at the BDA Conference on Saturday 27th April 2013.  They will road test all aspects of the initiative to ensure it runs smoothly. The pilot practices will work through the accreditation process and act in a focus group capacity by feeding back on the scheme, its methods, quality and efficiency.  On completion of the relevant criteria they will receive full accreditation when the Mouth Cancer Screening Accreditation Scheme launches.

Awareness is integral to achieving early detection of head and neck cancers, thus saving lives.  The Mouth Cancer Foundation will accredit dental practices that routinely participate in oral cancer screening.  Full membership includes access to a dedicated section of the charity website and FREE 1 hour CPD element as well as professional development and training modules suitable for all members of the practice team to ensure regular screening benefits practice patients.

Dr Joshi continues…”We have created an accreditation programme for dental practices in the UK that will encourage dentists to routinely screen for mouth cancer.  The scheme helps dentists to know what they are looking for and how to check and refer patients.  This will allow head and neck cancers to be caught earlier.  Head and neck cancers are particularly vicious and debilitating when detected late.  Patients who survive are a huge drain on medical resources for the rest of their lives, in terms of post operative and the psychological care required.  With earlier detection, lives are saved and costs on the NHS will reduce dramatically.”

The Mouth Cancer Screening Accreditation Scheme aims to improve outcomes for head and neck cancers in accordance with The British Dental Association’s occasional paper for the early detection and prevention of oral cancer and NICE guidelines.   It offers a realistic approach for dentists who seek to adopt best practice in oral cavity examination and opportunistic screening. The scheme embraces recent Care Quality Commission, Information Governance and Clinical Governance requirements and necessitates the recommendation by the General Dental Council for continuous professional development for the management of oral cancer for dentists.

The Mouth Cancer Screening Accreditation Scheme is open to any dental practice whose clinicians are registered with the GDC.  For more information or to take part in the pilot scheme please contact the Mouth Cancer Foundation via info@mouthcancerfoundation.org or call +44 (0) 1924 950 950 for more information.




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