HEE Midlands and East
The Educational Supervisors: Dipali has been an ES since 2012 and she is also the Principal, along with her husband Amiras, at the Practice. Her role is a combination of managing the practice, seeing patients and supporting the FD. She is present 2-3 days of the week and when not on site, is never more than a phone call away to answer any questions or solve any problems. She has 3 very young children so, when not at work, is busy looking after them - which is probably more difficult then actually being at work! Dipali's clinical strengths lie in restorative dentistry and extractions, and she has recently completed the Chris Orr restorative course. Her non-clinical strengths lie in complaints management, business management and mentoring the FDs. She has remained in close contact with all her previous FDs and supported them in moving onto future roles, and has a really good understanding of what the FD is going to need this year, and how to help them meet those needs. Because she has days in the week when she is on site but not seeing patients, she uses those days to schedule joint procedures with the FD like crown preps where she can sit chairside for an hour and assist them, so they are not left alone.
Marzena has assisted Dipali supporting the FD's since 2012 but this is her first year as an ES in an official capacity. She is present all 5 days of the week and is a general practitioner with almost 25 years of experience. She has recently diversified her clinical skills into the areas of implantology and short-term orthodontics. Outside of work, Marzena rides a motorcycle and horses and often seen around town in her leathers and a helmet! She is also excellent at minor oral surgery, happy to run into lunch if it means helping another dentist.
The Practice: The practice is a 6 surgery site, and any one time there are 5 dentists working, including the FD, and a hygienist doing both NHS and private work. This means that, there are 2-3 other dentists, other than Dipali and Marzena, to help at all times. Some of the dentists have been previous FDs at the practice so they are familiar with the training year and provide alot of support both clinically, as well as with the non-clinical tasks the FD will be required to do through the year like Foundation skills, audits and the portfolio.
The team has a varied skill mix, in terms of their strengths, and we have team members that do implants, short-term orthodontics, extremely impressive cosmetic work and surgical extractions. Dipali herself also does facial aesthetics.
All our nurses are qualified or mid-training and the FD will always have an experienced dental nurse assisting them chairside. You will never have to work alone or unassisted. The FDs working hours are 9am to 5pm every day except Friday when they are usually on a training day at Peterborough. When there is no training day, the FD has the Friday off and is not scheduled to work.
We have an experienced reception team this is not just good at patient and appointment management, but also aware of how to manage the FD's diary. At the beginning of the year the FD is given really long check-up appointments, usually 45 minutes and an hour for emergencies and this gets slowly shortened over the course of the year as they build up speed and competence to about 20 minutes by the end of the foundation year. They FD gets to dictate how long they want for treatment and they will not be put under any unreasonable pressure to shorten appointments.
The Area: March is a market town and a hub of activity amongst the surrounding towns. It has easy train links into Cambridge, Peterborough, London and Birmingham, and the station is a short walk or car journey from the Practice. A lot of our previous FDs have chosen to move into town to ease the daily commute, and accommodation is relatively cheap compared to the bigger cities and very easy to find. Dipali herself lived in March until very recently and has now moved to Cambridge and the daily commute is 50 minutes by car. There is lots of free parking outside the surgery. Previous FDs have also chosen to live with other FDs from the area in a flat-share and commute in.
Our patients are made up of the local community mainly, and the practice has been part of that community for over 30 years. We see all kinds of patients from families to the elderly and everything in between. They are of mixed need, and being the only NHS practice in a large radius, we are never short of patients and have never before struggled to help the FD meet all their clinical quotas and get plenty of experience in every area of dentistry.
Other Points of Interest: We have all the latest equipment and materials on site including a computerised record keeping system, in-surgery digital x-rays, an OPG, 2 rotary endo systems, surgical equipment and a digital intra-oral scanner. The FD will be able to use all this equipment from early on in the year because we believe we are supporting them to become a progressive, modern clinician that is building their skill to be at the forefront of dentistry. We want to be able to teach you not just to have a solid foundation of basic clinical skills but also learn how to do things in this rapidly developing world of dentistry by embracing new techniques, materials and ideas. By the end of the year our aim is for you to be able to be so competent and functional that you could walk into any associate job with confidence, possibly even one within our own practices - many of our previous FDs have chosen to stay on with us because of the happy and supportive working environment we provide.
Above all we are an extremely fun practice, we have each other's backs at work - help out to see a patient if they are running late or need help with a procedure. We socialise quite frequently as a practice and a lot of the team are also friendly outside of work. Despite our combined experience being extensive, we are a young team with lots of energy, a good work ethic and a great sense of humour. We have great banter everyday, we have lunch together as a team and we love what we do!