Covid has impacted all aspects of dentistry, and the impact on training is probably most significant. What can we do to support those embarking on their career? The burden on trainers is greater than ever, and we need to support them as much as the young dentists. The financial rewards are not sufficient to warrant training, and it's often a vocation. But let's hope everyone is getting the support they deserve or highlighting it to those who have influence.
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Interesting isn't it - having an 'extra' year can esure additional opportunities and competency reinforcement, rather than compromise or gaps affecting every year perhaps
Many have been suggesting 2 years FT/VT to improve clinical and professional skills on the front lines for years pre-Covid, as graduates have gradually had less and less patient treatment opportunities chronically - there are some exceptions of course but the chronic trend has been there for years, thus the fudges of counting any root-filing as say filing a canal in one patient and obturating only in another, as being valid beginning to end competency achievement - indeed it is not unusual to have FDs say in February this is my second ever amalgam restoration, after graduating from Dental school. Some have done double figures, some done non, it is that variable
So who knows, with undergrads getting even less clinical exposures, less support, less confidence on graduating (from less staff and less resources to teach by the way, they are rationed too) and only 1 year if FT/VT to help most survive in a Practice setting, perhaps an additional funded year is an investment in them and the Profession
Or how about this for a radical thought - extend the Undergraduate course to 6 years and qualify it as a proper University Doctorate, DDS or DMD, like most of the rest of the world ie: a proper Doctor title, not honorary, just like Hungary, Sweden, Portugal, USA etc, etc
I suppose one could counter-argue they'll lose 1 year of 'extra' earnings in a 40+year career; but also what are the odds of them getting an early complaint or GDC sanction or worse, if they have even less proficiency and experience clinically etc - will they end up more vulnerable or stressed or even cutting their Career short in our very adversarial systems currently ?!?
Whatever the Dental Schools produce/graduate, Foundation Training is legally obliged to try and make the best of it, but given Dental Schools have the person for 5 years, the scope for FT/VT to compensate for any under-developments is only 1 year for most (some 2 years schemes exist and they are excellent wrt professional development outcomes) and thus 1 year gives very limited opportunities.
Having said that our Trainers and HEE and the Practices that support them do an amazing job, but ultimately they are not miracle workers and neither are our Undergraduate Teachers and thus...... is an additional year for all, the optimum smart outcome here
I'm guessing this qualitative aspect was a major factor in Scotland's decision to add a year but as always, those who control the purse strings decide - if it was down mainly to the quality of the Professional produced for the next 40 years, for many the decision would be a no-brainer I suspect.