Dental patients are not receiving clear and accurate information

Simplyhealth's Annual Dental Survey has revealed that dentists could be doing more to provide clear and transparent information to their patients.
The survey of 11,785 British adults found that 48% of those who visit the dentist haven't ever noticed that dental prices are clearly displayed or explained by their dentist. Only 27% said that during their check-ups they have been given a written treatment plan that included charges.

James Glover, spokesperson for Simplyhealth says: "It is important that patients understand the dental treatment they are being advised to have and the costs involved if they are to value the care they receive. Patients should ask plenty of questions so they are involved and able to make informed decisions about their dental health.

"The lack of information patients say they currently receive could be why 24% of those surveyed said they don't believe visiting the dentist is good value for money, and 12% said it isn't at all good value. Although health cash plans and dental plans can help people budget for their appointments it is clear that more could be done to ensure patients fully understand the care they receive."

Access to NHS dentistry has continued to improve. Only 16% of people say they have struggled to find an NHS dentist, compared to 29% last year and 39% in 2010. Despite this, we found that 54% of British adults are concerned that they won't be able to afford dental care in the future.

The government has recognised the need for more information when it comes to healthcare. Its 'information revolution' is focused on making public health information more widely available and accessible to patients so they are more involved in their care. The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) will also shortly release the findings of its market study. It has looked at how dentistry services are sold and the extent to which there is access to accurate and impartial information to help patients make informed decisions.

Simplyhealth has been helping people access affordable healthcare for 140 years. It provides health cash plans, dental plans and private medical insurance to individuals, families and businesses.

With a health cash plan or dental plan customers pay a monthly premium and then claim cash back towards the cost of check-ups and treatment up to their annual limit. This can help them budget for appointments and ensure they attend regular check-ups.

To download a copy of Simplyhealth's Annual Dental Survey 2012 and for more information about Simplyhealth, please visit


Notes to editors

- A copy of Simplyhealth's Annual Dental Survey 2012 as well as interviews with Michael Thomas, case studies and a spokesperson from Simplyhealth are available upon request

- All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 11785 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 16 - 23 March 2012. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+). All research conducted adheres to the MRS Codes of Conduct. Based around principles of data protection legislation and research ethics, the MRS code has the confidence of the business community, government and regulators

About Simply Health

- We became Simplyhealth in 2009 after bringing together HSA, BCWA, LHF, HealthSure, Totally Active, our   family of health companies have joined together over the last ten years to form Simplyhealth

- We've been providing healthcare solutions for 140 years, dedicated to serving our customers and patients through a variety of cash plans, dental plans, private medical insurance, self funded health plans and mobility and living aids 

- Simplyhealth is a trading name of Simplyhealth Access, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority Simplyhealth as it stands today, now covers nearly four million people with health plans (more than any other company) and helps 20,000 companies with their employees' health

- Simplyhealth is committed to making a positive impact on its communities. Each year, we donate over £1 million to  health related charities and causes


The information contained in these articles is intended to be for general interest, and should not be relied upon for specific conditions or complaints. You should always consult your GP or other healthcare practitioner for specific advice. The information provided is not the opinion of Simplyhealth and has been sourced through a third party.