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Dental Services

The dental team within the Strategic Planning and Performance Group oversees all aspects of the delivery of health service dental care and treatment provided by Northern Ireland’s approximately 360 high street dental practices.

This includes the provision of treatment of general dental care alongside specialist care provided within orthodontic and oral surgery practices.  Our responsibilities include clinical governance, contract management and service development.

We promote safety and quality within dental practices through routine monitoring and quality assurance arrangements and are committed to working in partnership with our colleagues in the Department of Health, and within practice through the British Dental Association and Local Dental Committees to ensure the effective delivery of health service dentistry to patients.

The dental team also provides professional support to the Commissioning Directorate as well as the BSO, RQIA, Department of Health and the Public Health Agency.


Useful Links:

Oral Health advice Oral health | nidirect

Accessing dental care Health Service dental charges and treatments | nidirect and Types of dentists and your rights as a patient | nidirect

Find a Dentist / HSC Service Finder HSC Service Finder – HSC (

Out of hours emergency dental care Out of Hours Emergency Dental Treatment – HSC (

Making a complaint FPS Complaints – HSC (

Information for dental practitioners Dental Contractors (


  • Coronavirus (COVID 19( HSC service information and guidance
    Information during the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

    Dental practices were significantly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic with capacity greatly reduced.

    As restrictions have eased, capacity has increased but remains below pre-pandemic levels.

    Practices are also continuing to work through their backlog of treatment that had been postponed during the pandemic.

    As such access to some routine care, including check-ups, may continue to be restricted with practices asked to prioritise patients based on their clinical need.

    The out-of-hours walk-in Emergency Dental Clinics were closed due to the pandemic and were replaced by Urgent Dental Care Clinics (UDCC).

    These UDCCs continue to operate at weekends however you must be referred by a dentist.

    If you experience an emergency or urgent dental condition, you should contact your own dentist in the first instance including at weekends and bank holidays.

    If you are not registered with a dentist, then you should contact a local dentist and explain the issue you are experiencing.  You may need to contact a number of practices before finding one with sufficient capacity to see you.

    You can also ask if remote management, referral to a UDCC, or referral to the Urgent Student Clinic at the School of Dentistry may be appropriate.