Tuesday, 9 April 2019

Questions (448)

Seán Haughey

Question:

448. Deputy Seán Haughey asked the Minister for Health his plans to introduce preventative orthodontic screening for children as part of the new oral health policy; his further plans to recruit the services of private orthodontists for such screening; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that early intervention is crucial to prevent acute orthodontic issues for children in later life; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16611/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

On 3 April 2019, I published  Smile agus Sláinte, the new National Oral Health Policy together with my colleague Regina Doherty TD the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection.

The Policy supports a preventive approach. Under the Policy, all children up to 16 years will have available to them eight oral healthcare packages consisting of examinations, assessments (including orthodontic assessments), advice, prevention interventions, emergency care and referral as appropriate. The packages will be provided in a primary care setting by oral healthcare practitioners contracted by the HSE. The Policy supports the development of clinical care pathways to ensure that some aspects of orthodontic care, where appropriate, will be more readily available in a primary dental care practice. Stakeholders including the Dental Council will have an important role in progressing this.