Jane Dodds is pressing the Welsh Government to improve dental services in her region.

The Mid and West Wales MS asked at the Senedd how the Government has increased access to NHS dental care for adults and children.

She thanked Health Minister, Eluned Morgan, for her engagement on dentistry.

Ms Dodds said: “In contrast to the Conservatives, I feel that you have supported the calls for a wider scope on dentistry - for example, you've helped with funding a dentist in Llandrindod Wells.

“Mid and West Wales is sometimes considered a bit of a dental desert, but that dentist has certainly helped, and there is more to be done.

“I welcome the Government's commitment to reforms aimed at improving accessibility, but the pace does remain agonisingly slow.

“In Powys, Powys Teaching Health Board data shows that despite gradual declines, there are 4,361 adults still waiting for an NHS dentist and 274 children.

“There is one good thing to report about Powys Teaching Health Board, which is that it has a dental helpline, which is very positive.”

Ms Dodds asked Ms Morgan for her thoughts on a national dental helpline to help people waiting for an NHS dentist to connect with potential vacancies.

Ms Morgan said that since April, 2022, practices have been offered the opportunity to work under a variation of their dental activity contract that enables them to focus on prevention, risk and need-based treatment.

She said: “Capacity released by this shift has allowed 184,592 new adult patients and 116,894 new child patients to access to NHS dental care.”

Speaking about access to dentistry, Ms Morgan said: “I know that there have been concerns in the past in particular about getting dentists in the area that both you and I represent. You're quite right about Powys; it was quite good to be able to support the new dentist there.”

The Health Minister added that the other issue she has been “pursuing recently” is the concern about the very low numbers of Welsh domiciled students who are being enrolled in the only dental school in Wales, in Cardiff University.