One of the most common things constituents write to me about is NHS dental provision. I completely understand the scale of the challenges we have, and I have raised them in the House of Commons on several occasions and met with the Dentistry Minister. It was great to see the Minister reference discussions she has had with MPs like myself this week in the House – I have posted the video up on my Facebook page.
One of the key challenges I raised with the Government is around recruitment. Not enough people want to become dentists in Cornwall. Another is the contract used to pay dentists for NHS work. The Minister confirmed yesterday that NHS England is leading on dental contract reform work and there will be further reforms to dental services by April 2022. She also informed the House that there will be changes to contracts to help with recruitment and we will investigate expansion of fluoridated water, to improve children's oral health.
The Minister also said that a lot of oral health problems are preventable (fillings and infections from not brushing our teeth often enough, drinking too many sugary drinks, etc), so I will raise the idea of a new public health campaign with colleagues in Government. NHS dental provision has been a longstanding issue, but with the right work, we can deliver long-term solutions for the people of North Cornwall.
As we emerge from the pandemic and drive towards net zero we are determined to tackle climate change and make it win-win for both our planet and our economy. That is why the Government have announced a major £166 million funding package to encourage the rapid development of technologies in carbon capture, creating over 60,000 well paid jobs across the UK, cutting business costs and revitalising our industrial heartlands. This investment will help the Government deliver on the Prime Minister’s 10-point plan for a green industrial revolution, fighting climate change and creating jobs. It will also help the UK meet its ambitious climate commitments, including reaching net zero emissions by 2050 & the world’s most ambitious climate target of reducing UK emissions by 78% by 2035 compared to 1990 levels.
The Big Lunch is the UK’s annual celebration to give thanks and get to know our neighbours and communities. This year, there are more reasons than ever to get together as The Big Lunch kicks off a summer of community, friendship and fun. The Big Lunch has teamed up with good causes across the UK to celebrate summer 2021 with a whole Month of Community, including Thank You Day on 4 July. You can join in with a Big Lunch safely, when it works for you and your community, whether that is to say cheers to volunteers, connect with your neighbours or simply to say thank you.
I am looking forward to seeing North Cornwall turn out for this one, and you can find out more at www.thebiglunch.com.