Rationing and Capping of NHS Orthodontic Treatment
NHS orthodontic treatment is available provided the following criteria (set locally by the Thames Valley Area Team, NHS England - following national Department of Health guidelines) have been met:
- You or your child has been referred by your general dental practitioner
- Treatment starts before the age of 18
- There is a 'need' for treatment - only the more complex problems qualify for NHS funding
- There is sufficient funding in the current financial year for treatment to begin
- Other conditions may be introduced in the future by the Area Team
Any child referred by the family dentist is entitled to a free NHS orthodontic assessment to see if treatment is either required or desirable. NHS orthodontic treatment is rationed with only the more complex problems qualifying for funding. There may be a waiting list for non-urgent procedures because the provision of orthodontic treatment in specialist practice has been capped by a limitation of NHS funding available in any one financial year. At present there seems to little prospect of additional funding to meet increased demand.
If you do not qualify for NHS funded orthodontic treatment, you may wish to consider our low cost independent scheme specifically for problems falling outside the scope of NHS funding. Please ask for further details.
Download our NHS leaflet (pdf);