Senior minister visits community dental service

Minister Francis Maude visited Bedford Community Dental Services in Kimbolton Rd.
Minister Francis Maude visited Bedford Community Dental Services in Kimbolton Rd.

A senior minister visited a community dental service in Bedford that provides treatment to vulnerable people.

Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude met staff at Community Dental Services (CDS) in Bedford’s Kimbolton Road on Monday.

CDS is a social enterprise formed in 2011 that employs 130 people in 20 clinics across Beds, Suffolk and Thetford in Norfolk.

It provides dental services to vulnerable groups who require special treatment or who find it difficult to access high street dentists, for example due to disability.

The group, which has its head office at Bedford Heights in Manton Lane, nine clinics around Bedfordshire and also operate two mobile clinics, which take dental treatments to patients who are unable to travel.

Minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General Mr Maude said: “I visited the Community Dental Services in Bedford on the recommendation of the excellent local MP Richard Fuller. It’s one of over 100 public service mutuals which we are now tracking across England.

The inspirational staff are delivering innovative dental services and saving money, which they are able to plough back into improving what they do still further.

“As part of this government’s long-term economic plan we want to see more public service mutuals so we can get the best possible services for hardworking people, at the lowest cost to taxpayers.”

Public service mutuals are organisations that have left the public sector but continue to deliver public services.

CDS is wholly owned by its staff and recently formed a charity to work with voluntary organisations.

Alison Reid, CDS’s chief executive, said: “It was a pleasure to welcome the Minister to the dental care centre and share with him the work we do at CDS with some of the most vulnerable people in society, as well as the high quality and specialist dental services we provide.

“He was most impressed with the passion of the team, the calming environment we have created for our patients and the fully equipped mobile dental unit we use to deliver services to people who find it difficult to travel to our clinics.”