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#GPnews: 4 million patients left without GP out-of-hours cover

12:25 The closure of an urgent dental care centre in London will send even more work in the direction of GPs, leading dentists have warned.

NHS England plans to close the Kentish Town urgent dental service on 31 March, despite 5,451 people using the service last year, reports.

Patients have been told to call NHS 111 to be signposted to other services if they have an urgent dental problem in future.

The British Dental Association said the lack of emergency dental care is ‘piling more pressure on GPs’ and described the latest closure as ‘absurd’.

‘Access to emergency dental care is increasingly a postcode lottery,’ Henrik Overgaard-Nielsen, chair of the General Dental Practice at the BDA, said. ‘Inadequate provision is simply piling more pressure on GPs and A&Es that are not equipped to provide dental treatment.’

He added: ‘It’s absurd that NHS 111 operators are asking patients to do ring-rounds.’

9:15 The health news is this morning dominated by Pulse’s exclusive investigation, which found that one in ten areas had no GP cover in their out-of-hours services.

Most reports centre on the scale of the areas that have struggled to recruit GPs for out-of-hours services, which cover a combined population of 4 million patients.

Have a look at the related coverage in the Guardian, the Times, the Telegraph, the Mail, the Mirror and the Sun.

Read the original here, and the full investigation here.

Seen something interesting? Email or tweet @pulsetoday with the hashtag #GPnews