The British Dental Association (BDA) has received clarification from the CQC following a recent announcement that they would be asking ‘all providers to submit a statement of financial viability in the form of a statement letter from a financial specialist’. There is provision for them to do this in law, however the BDA has said that following their enquiries the CQC have confirmed there had been an error in the monthly bulletin and that providers with an NHS contract will, in fact, be exempt from the requirement. Practices that carry out a mix of NHS and private work a breakdown of the proportion will not be required. According to the BDA, the CQC will issue a full clarification to all providers.
The BDA quote the CQC as saying: ‘If a provider has a contract to provide NHS services, we will take that as assurance of financial viability for the purposes of our registration assessment. We will not require details of any breakdown of the proportion of public/ private work.
"New dental providers that do not have an NHS contract will be required to demonstrate their viability by the means set out in the guidance. They are not exempt from this requirement.
"The new approach will apply to new providers submitting a new registration application.
"It may also apply to some existing providers seeking to make changes to their registration (for instance for increases in scale or when we have intelligence that suggests a provider does not have the financial standing to provide the services set out in their Statement of Purpose)."
From this, the BDA suggests that established dental providers are not affected by the change; it should never apply to a provider with an NHS contact and only to: new 100% private providers; and (potentially) to a 100% private provider who makes changes to their registration, e.g. adding a partner or location.