The Lothian Local Dental Committee (LDC) consists of fourteen elected dentists from across the Lothians, whose role is to represent the professional interests of our colleagues. We are concerned with dental issues which pertain to pay and conditions, pensions and workforce.
Meetings are held five times a year at the Royal Scots Club, 29-31 Abercromby Place, Edinburgh EH3 6QE. They are open to any dentist to attend and observe. If you wish to attend, please consult our events section for dates and times.
I have been a member of our Lothian Dental (GDP) Committee, LDC, (also, sometimes, referred to as the GDP Subcommittee of the Lothian Area Dental Committee) for 20 years. In that time I have seen, at first hand, how our Committee serves and represents the needs of our GDP colleagues. Members of our Committee represent our colleagues on the Lothian Dental Division Executive, the Lothian Area Dental Committee, the Lothian Emergency Dental Service, the Scottish Dental Practice Committee and the East of Scotland BDA Branch Council. Two of our most recent representatives on the BDA Branch Council have been elected President of the Branch including the current president, Rachel Reid.
Perhaps the greatest challenge many of us have faced in our practicing lives has been the change in regulations which made it incumbent on all GDPs to provide a Local Decontamination Unit (LDU) in our practices. The role played by our Committee in representing the needs and concerns of our colleagues at that time was crucial. The part played, especially, by two of our Committee, Eric Battison and Mark McCutcheon, who were the Dental Practice Advisers appointed by Lothian Health to coordinate with GDPs the building of the LDUs, was all-important in helping to bring about a satisfactory conclusion to the whole process for the vaste majority of our colleagues. I feel I personally benefitted greatly from being a member of the Committee during that time. The LDU was certainly the greatest challenge I have faced in my years of general dental practice. Being a member of the Committee was a great advantage and I was eventually able to build a new LDU, which, in my case, involved buying a plot of land adjacent to our practice and building an extension which could accommodate the LDU.
The Committee has played and continues to play an important role in many other areas, too, of concern for our colleagues and it would not be possible to describe all of this in this short piece. However, I think it is important to mention that the unhappiness felt by many GDPs with the service provided by the Edinburgh Dental Institute has been a concern for our Committee for many years. We carried out a survey of our GDP colleagues in Lothian addressing this issue a few years ago and the results of the feedback we received from that survey allowed us to better represent the dissatisfaction of our profession to the Institute.
From my many years of service I can testify to the really vital role our Committee plays in representing our Lothian GDPs and I would wholeheartedly recommend it’s support to all our colleagues.