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Cost of living crisis – 15% avoid dentist due to cost of checks ups

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As the cost of living crisis continues into 2023, the number of people who avoid the dentist due to the cost of treatment has increased to 15% – up from 12% in October.

This is according to Healthwatch, a watchdog that assessed the impact of the cost of living on people’s health and wellbeing.

The number of those who avoided NHS appointments in general due to the cost of travel doubled from 6% in October to one in 10 (11%) in December.

Other findings include:

  • Over one in ten (11%) have avoided booking an NHS appointment because they couldn’t afford the associated costs, such as accessing the internet or the cost of a phone call. This is up from 7% in October

  • One in ten (10%) people have also avoided taking up one or more NHS prescriptions because of the cost, up from 6% in October

  • One in ten (10%) avoided buying over the counter medication they normally rely on, up from 7% in October.

Louise Ansari, Healthwatch national director, said: ‘It is clear that the impact of the cost of living crisis on people’s health and wellbeing is beginning to hit home.

‘We are very worried that people are increasingly avoiding getting prescription medicines, booking NHS appointments and travelling to their appointments because of the extra costs.

‘The steps people are taking to cope with the cost of living can have serious implications on their physical and mental health. This is likely to place a further burden on the already stretched NHS.

‘The cost of living should never be a barrier to healthcare. The increase in the number of people avoiding vital care needs urgent joint action from the government and health and care services.’

By offering your staff dental insurance plans, you can help them with the increasing cost of living and access much needed dental care. Never underestimate the importance of regular dental care. Dental check-ups can help with preventative health, and stop issues from progressing and pick up issues such as early stage mouth cancer or tooth decay. If you would like to find out more about how you can support your staff with a dental insurance plan for them and their family, please contact us today.


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