NHS Orthodontic Treatments
From April 1st 2006 all spending decisions regarding provision of healthcare are taken by your local Primary Care Trust (PCT) their details will be in your local phone book or you can visit the NHS website. The government has given your PCT a sum of money from which they pay for NHS treatment. As this amount of money is fixed and the PCT is not allowed to overspend, they must determine which treatments they are willing to pay for and they must also prioritise health services according to local needs.
Cosmetic treatment is NOT available on the NHS. If your orthodontic problem is a cosmetic one then the PCT will not fund your treatment and you will need to pay privately for it.
In England Primary Care Trusts have been advised by the Department of Health that the Index of Orthodontic Treatment Need (IOTN) should be used to categorise the level of severity of a patients orthodontic problem. They have also been advised by the Department of Health not to pay for orthodontic treatment if the level of severity is below a particular level as they feel that such treatment may improve cosmetics but it would not improve the patients health, therefore, the patient would need to pay for private treatment. Your dentist may be able to tell you if your problem is severe enough to qualify for NHS treatment, if not, they may need to refer you to myself for an assessment.
Modern tooth coloured/transparent braces are more expensive than metal ones and as a result are not available for NHS patients. This type of brace will only be available to patients who pay privately for their care.