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The Authority publishes its review of the General Dental Council’s performance for 2017/18

The Professional Standards Authority (the Authority) has published its annual performance review of the General Dental Council. The GDC’s register covers almost 112,000 dental professionals practising in the UK.

We have assessed the GDC’s performance against our Standards of Good Regulation. For this review period, the GDC has met 22 out of 24 of the Standards. Although the bulk of the Standards were met, we noted a deterioration in the GDC’s timeliness in progressing fitness to practise cases, which meant that we did not consider that this Standard was met. We are aware that the GDC took significant action to address the declining performance in 2017/18 but this did not result in improvements that we could identify in that year. We will review the GDC’s progress in the next performance review.

More information about how we reached our decision is set out in our Performance Review – GDC 2017/18 or read a summary in our snapshot.

Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care


Christine Braithwaite, Director Standards and Policy
Reception: 020 7389 8030

Notes to the Editor

  1. The Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care oversees nine statutory bodies that regulate health and social care professionals in the UK.
  2. We assess their performance and report to Parliament. We also conduct audits and investigations and can appeal fitness to practise cases to the courts if we consider that sanctions are insufficient to protect the public and it is in the public interest.
  3. The Standards of Good Regulation are designed to ensure that the regulators are protecting the public but also promoting confidence in health and care professionals and themselves. The Standards cover the regulators’ four core functions: setting and promoting guidance and standards for the profession; setting standards for and quality assuring the provision of education and training; maintaining a register of professionals; and taking action where a professional’s fitness to practise may be impaired.
  4. We also set standards for organisations holding voluntary registers for health and social care occupations and accredit those that meet them.
  5. We share good practice and knowledge, conduct research and introduce new ideas to our sector. We monitor policy developments in the UK and internationally and provide advice on issues relating to professional standards in health and social care.
  6. We do this to promote the health, safety and wellbeing of users of health and social care services and the public. We are an independent body, accountable to the UK Parliament.
  7. Our values are at the heart of who we are and what we do. We are committed to being impartial, fair, accessible and consistent in the application of our values.
  8. The General Dental Council (GDC) regulates the dental professions (dentists, dental nurses, dental hygienists, dental technicians, dental therapists, orthodontic therapists and clinical dental technicians) in the United Kingdom. Its work includes: setting and maintaining standards of practice and conduct; maintaining a register of qualified professionals (only those appropriately registered with the GDC may practise dentistry in the UK); assuring the quality of dental pre-registration education and training; requiring dental professionals to keep their skills up to date through continuing professional development; and taking action to restrict or remove from practice registrants who are not considered to be fit to practise. As at 30 June 2018, the GDC was responsible for a register of 111,813 dental professionals. Its annual retention fee is £890 for dentists and £116 for dental care professionals.
  9. More information about our work and the approach we take is available at