Document Can I provide a new orthodontic appliance or retainer if a patient has lost or broken it?

An NHS-funded replacement orthodontic appliance or retainer may only be provided by holders of an NHS orthodontic contract. To be considered as Regulation 11 the appliance must be a like-for-like replacement.

The charge band for replacing a NHS dental appliance is dependent on the reason why it needs replacing:

Lost or broken - This is Regulation 11, regardless of how long ago the original appliance was fitted. You would charge the patient the appropriate Regulation 11 charge per appliance, even if the patient is exempt from paying for NHS dental treatment.

Wear and tear - There should be no charge to the patient if the replacement is needed while active treatment is ongoing / the patient is in supervised retention, even if it goes on for several years. No UOA are awarded for this.

Once a patient has been discharged (usually after a minimum of 12 months supervised retention) the situation is not specifically covered by the regulations. However, the advice given by the British Orthodontic Society to its members is that in these circumstances, you have ‘the discretion to make a judgment about the clinical necessity' and therefore, isn't necessarily obliged to provide replacement retainers free of charge as part of their NHS contract.

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