Northern Ireland Department of Health oral health improvement plans for children and older persons - consultation response

In December 2023, the Department of Health launched a consultation on the recommendations arising from the Children’s Oral Health Improvement Plan and Older Person’s Oral Health Improvement Plan, which aim to best serve the needs and improve the oral health of the population in Northern Ireland.

Our response

In March 2024, RCPCH responded to this consultation, focussing on the recommendations arising from the Children’s Oral Health Improvement Plan.

Our summary

  • RCPCH noted that poor oral health is not a trivial matter. It can lead to consistent pain, infections, altered sleep and eating patterns, recurring school absence, decreased wellbeing and in some cases hospitalisation. As such prevention of poor oral health and earlier intervention should be the key focus of the Children’s Oral Health Improvement Plan.
  • The College agreed that a fully developed dental epidemiology programme should continue in NI to provide information and intelligence to improve oral health and provision of services. This epidemiology programme would be important both to understand the need as it currently stands as well as projections for the future. 
  • The College supported the recommendation that the promotion of good oral health and prevention of dental disease among children should be included in all strategic plans/policies dealing with general health.  

Download and read the response in full below.

We respond to a wide range of consultations to ensure that the College’s position, and ultimately children’s health, is represented. Members can get involved in current consultations by contacting the Ireland Team: