Ashkan Pitchforth: Dental practitioner and Clinical Dental Advisor, NHS England South East

When did you start in the NHS?

2009.

Why did you choose to work in the NHS?

The NHS is a system which benefits everyone. If I work within it, and encourage others to do so, then we will be able to keep the NHS going and ensure the benefit is felt by all for years to come.

Describe what you do in 100 words

I am an NHS general dental practitioner which involves examining patients in an NHS surgery and performing routine dental care for them, including but not limited to, fillings, extractions, dentures and root canal treatments. Outside of this clinical role, I work for NHS England South East as an advisor. This involves undertaking practice visits and suggesting recommendations on cases or complaints.

What do you enjoy most about your role?

Patient satisfaction – as a dentist you regularly see your patients and develop a very good relationship with them. The patient has gained trust in you and when you are able to improve someone’s smile, oral hygiene or relieve their pain then this is very rewarding.

How would you describe the NHS in one word?

Caring.

If you could give the NHS any 70th birthday present what would it be?

Millions of pounds! The NHS does the best it can within the financial constraints from the Government. I feel more money spent within the NHS could result in expansion of services and further improvements.

What advice would you give to someone who was thinking about working in the NHS?

I would certainly recommend working within the NHS – it’s a very rewarding career pathway to pursue.

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