VITAL: Coffs Dental Centre’S Cathy Kelleher is one of many dentists campaigning for the Federal Government to retain oral health care benefits for children.
VITAL: Coffs Dental Centre’S Cathy Kelleher is one of many dentists campaigning for the Federal Government to retain oral health care benefits for children. Trevor Veale

Dentists rally to save dental benefits

LOCAL dentists have joined a national fight against the Federal Government’s plans to scrap the Child Dental Benefits Schedule in the coming months.

Principal at The Dental Centre in Coffs Harbour, Dr Scott Geddes, √ and his fellow dental practitioners have spoken out against the government’s plan to disband the program, which they say provides access for thousands of children aged 2–17 to vital dental care.

Dr Geddes said eliminating the program “will have an immediate and drastic impact” on the oral health of Australian children.

“In 2015, we performed over 1400 examinations, placed nearly 600 fillings and cleaned the teeth of 1200 eligible kids. We have seen many families seek care who may otherwise have been unable to,” Dr Geddes said.

Under the program, Dr Geddes says his practitioners and many others elect to bulk bill eligible treatments including cleaning and fillings “to maximise accessibility and minimise out-of-pocket expenses”.

More than 6500 people have signed the Australian Dental Association’s online petition to save the CDBS.



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