Brent oral health initiative commended at NHS Parliamentary Awards

Published: 17th July 2023

A scheme initiated by our Outer North West London colleagues and Brent Council was nominated by local MP Tulip Siddiq for an NHS Parliamentary Award.

The MP for Hampstead and Kilburn put forward the ‘Better health on your doorstep’ initiative in the ‘Health Inequalities Award’ category. The scheme that made the shortlist representing London saw an oral health bus hitting the streets of Brent. MP Tulip Siddiq said:

“Congratulations again on being shortlisted for the Health Equality Award – it really is a fantastic achievement and I know that the standards this year were incredibly high. Being shortlisted for the award means a great deal, and you should all be proud of yourselves. It is a credit to the difference you make to people’s lives."

At an event to celebrate the achievement held at Willesden Health and Care Centre on 12 July, Cllr Neil Nerva, Brent’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Adult Social Care, said, “This is a fantastic endorsement of our work to get out into our communities to address health needs.

“It is credit to our Public Health team that they recognised how the pandemic had exacerbated inequalities in oral health and dental access and found a way to address the issue proactively.”

Group Oral Health.jpg

Oral health in Brent is a major health concern, with the borough having the second highest prevalence of dental decay in London. The issue is a particular concern amongst the young, with over 40 per cent of five-year-olds suffering from tooth decay.

Nearly 750 children were seen over fifteen sessions, with 40 per cent identified as having cavities and referred on for treatment. Others booked on with an NHS dentist for future check-ups.

The scheme previously won a ‘Nursing Times Award’ in the ‘Public Health’ category last October and its success has led Brent’s Public Health Team onto looking to extend the initiative into Nursing Homes. They are currently working with the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) to carry out a study that will see dental therapists going into Care Homes in Brent to assess residents’ dental health.

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