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Making it work in practice

The prototype system needs a different approach to providing primary care general dental services because the emphasis is on prevention.

Fulfilment of the contract at year end is measured by the combination of:

  • patient numbers measured against the contractors expected capitated population (CECP)
  • prototype activity measured against the expected minimum activity level (EMA)

There are different tools and resources that you can use to help you manage the new prototype arrangements.

With the emphasis being on prevention, it's expected that the oral health of a practices' patients will improve over time. 

This will result in the need for less treatment and in time, may lead to practices being unable to meet the expected minimum activity (EMA) of their contract.

However, the remuneration model looks at achieving capitation and activity measures, allowing practices to compensate for a lower than expected delivery of its activity measure by seeing more patients.

This modelling tool is referred to as the 'exchange mechanism'. We have further guidance for the exchange mechanism available. This guidance can help practices with calculating the number of patients they need to see in exchange for the number of prototype UDAs they will not deliver.

The modelling tool has been developed to help practices:

  • forecast their year-end position at any time

  • determine where the focus needs to be to ensure fulfilment of the contract measures

How to use the modelling tool

The practice needs to populate the green boxes with an estimation of where they think their patient numbers and prototype activity delivery positions will be at year-end. 

Practices may wish to use their latest reported position from the capitation remuneration report as a starting point. 

This report is available on Compass and can be accessed using the normal Compass login.  Once the estimated figures have been entered, the tool will automatically calculate the current forecast year- end position. 

The data may be varied in either cell B19 (number) or B20 (percentage) in relation to activity and, cell B22 in relation to capitation.

The impact of any increase or decrease in the number of patients seen or, activity (prototype UDAs) delivered is calculated using these figures. It will enable the practice to see what action is required to steer delivery of the contract. Action may be to introduce skill mix, review recall patterns or perhaps change the practice opening hours.

The modelling tool can also help practices take account of holidays or extended periods of leave such as sickness, maternity or paternity leave and plan what resource they will need to cover any gaps in capacity.

You can download the modelling tool.

Modelling tool guidance or an animated version is available on request by emailing the dental contract review mailbox.

You can also download guidance on how providers can use the modelling tool as part of the exchange mechanism.

A webinar recording is available explaining how to use the modelling tool in conjunction with the capitation and remuneration report to help manage prototype practices

Patients attached to the list of a performer who is leaving or has left the practice may be transferred as a whole list to another existing or new performer.  

It is not possible to transfer the list in part.

You can view guidance on bulk patient transfers between performers.

If you need to transfer all of a performers patients to a different performer, complete the transfer request form

The appointment book management top tips reflect the advice that practices have shared with the dental contract reform programme team.

You can view the top tips for appointment book management.

Some practices have found that introducing skill mix to the clinical team has helped them implement the care pathway approach. This makes sure that the patient is given the appropriate care by the appropriate member of the clinical team, at the appropriate time.

Those that have successfully implemented skill mix have said that it frees up the time for the dentist to see new patients.

In some cases, this has resulted in personal development, improved job satisfaction and higher morale for nurses and administrative staff, as they have gained new skills and taken on more responsibility.

View hints and tips explaining how some practices have introduced skill mix.

Timely submission of FP17s and transmission of NHS appointment data is an essential element to testing dental contract reform. All prototype practices must meet the requirement of the programme in this respect.

To ensure practices fully understand what is expected of them and why, guidance on data transmission has been produced. 

You can view guidance on data transmission.

Prototype practices need to use leaflets and forms. These leaflets and forms have been amended to reflect general data protection regulations (GDPR).

NHS dental prototypes: Patient information

A patient information leaflet has been developed for the dental contract reform programme.

The leaflet sets out the care patients can expect under the prototype arrangements and also provides information on the current NHS Charges.

This should be given to all patients who are attending practices participating in the dental prototype scheme, together with the standard patient information leaflet “NHS dental services in England”.

Patient information: NHS dental prototypes leaflet

Prototype practice record form

The prototype practice record form (PRDP) is the patient declaration form which the patient must complete to give consent to treatment. 

There is a specific version of the form that must be used by prototype practices.

Prototype practice record form (PRDP)

Fair processing notice

This fair processing notice (also known as a privacy notice) makes patients aware that basic details (only the fact that a treatment was delivered) of their private treatment will be shared with the NHSBSA and, in anonymised form, with the Department of Health and NHS England.  

The dental contract reform programme is collecting data about private treatment delivered as an alternative to NHS care, for all patients who are on the practice capitation list as held by the NHSBSA, for evidence and learning purposes.

Fair processing notice​​​​​​All patients who have had NHS care from the practice in the last 3 years should be handed a copy of the fair processing notice that the programme has produced. Practices should ensure they have a continuous stock of this notice.

1. Patient information leaflet

These leaflets can be ordered online at but first you must follow Xerox’s registration process to enable ordering online.

You can download the registration form.

You should complete the registration form and send it to:

Once registered, Xerox will provide you with access to the online ordering portal at where you will be able to place your order from a restricted catalogue of forms.

2. PRDP forms and fair processing notice

The organisation responsible for the supply of the PRDP forms and the fair processing notice is Primary Care Support England (PCSE). The ordering process is separate and different to that followed to order the patient information leaflets.

First you must register with the PCSE portal.

Guidance on how to register to use the PCSE portal is contained in a letter you will receive by post when entering the prototyping arrangements. The letter has a unique identifier at the top of the page which is required for successful registration.

If the unique ID number is not known, you can email to request one.  You need to put ‘portal unique identifier needed’ in subject line.  You will also need to provide in the body of the email your name, your practice name, your practice address, and the organisation code which is your location ID.

Once registered you will be able to order your supply of PRDP forms and the fair processing notice by visiting the PCSE portal.

All other forms such as the FP17 are unchanged.