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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 2 Hansard (21 February) . . Page.. 523 ..

An additional $0.5m has been provided in the 2001-2002 budget for the next three years. It is anticipated that all waiting lists will have been eliminated by the end of this period if current staffing levels are maintained.

The Dental Health Program experiences difficulties in recruiting and retaining clinical and laboratory staff, particularly Dentists and Laboratory Technicians, due to salaries being uncompetitive with the private sector. This exacerbates the waiting list issues.

(b) Urgent clients are seen on the same day.

Both Civic Dental Clinic and Phillip Dental Clinic provide emergency services at 8:15 am and 1:15 pin Monday - Friday. Phillip Clinic also provides an emergency clinic on Saturday morning.

Patients waiting for routine treatment are advised to attend these clinics if they experience problems.

(3) How many people are awaiting (a) initial denture provision, and (b) denture replacement.

There is no waiting list for (a) initial denture provision or (b) denture replacement. The waiting list for full dentures was eliminated in May 2001. Clients are given the first available appointment. This is usually within one week.

(4) What is the average waiting time for dentures to be (a) initially fitted and provided, and (b) repaired or replaced.

After the initial consultation the provision of new dentures or the replacement of existing ones is currently around 8 weeks. Repairs have a 24 hour turnaround. Clients with dentures that require adjustment or are ill-fitting receive a service within 3 weeks. If there is a cancellation the laboratory will accommodate clients sooner.

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