Dental Foundation Training in Health Education Kent, Surrey and Sussex

Dental Foundation Training in Health Education Kent, Surrey and Sussex

Dentists or dental undergraduates who are about to qualify can apply via the national recruitment process to undertake Dental Foundation Training. Via this process, successful applicants are appointed to a Dental Foundation Training scheme. General information on the national recruitment process can be found at

Each training practice is assigned to a scheme based at a postgraduate centre where most of the study days take place (thirty throughout the year) There are five in the HEKSS area. These are:

HEKSS Central, based at the Tunbridge Wells Hospital at Pembury.

HEKSS Coastal, based at Eastbourne District General Hospital

HEKSS East, based at Kent & Canterbury Hospital

HEKSS South, based at the Princess Royal Hospital, Haywards Heath

HEKSS West, based at the Royal Surrey County Hospital, Guildford

Each scheme is led by a Training Programme Director.

Each scheme runs a local appointment event in March or April so that Foundation Dentists (FDs) can be appointed to their chosen practices.  At this event, FDs and Trainers meet and discuss geography and travel, workload, details of the practices, including patient base etc., and FDs are then given the choice of which practice they wish to go to, with priority being based on scoring position in the National Recruitment Process.

FDs are salaried both for their practice attendance and the study days and you should consider both as being part of your employment.  FDs must have thirty study days signed off by their Training Programme Director to complete dental foundation training and get full inclusion on the dental performer list at the end of the academic year. The most up to date version of the study day programme can be found on the HEKSS Dental website.

During the year we usually have three residential programmes. In September, this is for all of the HEKSS FDs and trainers. (1 night)  The second is usually in January for the HEKSS FDs only (1 night). All costs are covered but FDs will (usually) have to room share. For some days FDs may have to pay meal and travel costs in advance and then claim them back. We will also attend the BDA national conference.

FDs should not expect the study days to mirror undergraduate teaching. They are less about new knowledge and more about examining what is known and applying it in the practice environment, especially in NHS practice. Dental Foundation Training is an NHS funded programme. During the year FDs will be expected to make mini presentations and enter into discussions and debates.

Being a HEKSS FD brings with it special privileges, as our FDs can be registered with the University of Kent for the Postgraduate Certificate in Primary Dental Care for Foundation Dentists, and will complete this during the Foundation year.  At the end of the DF1 year, successful candidates will be awarded the Postgraduate Certificate in Primary Dental Care for Foundation Dentists,.

HEKSS has a number of core training posts for which all FDs from the UK are eligible from the following September.  The majority of those in HEKSS are based in maxilla-facial departments of District General Hospitals but there are some with restorative, DPH or salaried dental service (community dental) components.  For DCT posts commencing on 1st September 2017, the selection procedure will be via national recruitment.

HEKSS FDs will be registered with the University of Kent for the Postgraduate Certificate in Primary Dental Care for Foundation Dentists and at the end of the year, successful candidates will be awarded the Certificate.  You can then go on to undertake a second year, to be awarded a Diploma and then a third year, to be awarded a MSc.  Those not appointed to DCT posts can still be entered into the Master’s Degree programme, completing this from within general dental practice.  For the Certificate, FDs are required to complete the following:-

Governance Module (4).  These are portfolios that demonstrate your understanding of the legislation and protocols in specific areas, e.g. cross infection, as they apply in General Practice.  You will, of course, be given guidance.  We allow you 1 day of non-clinical time for each key skill.

Four “mini” clinical cases.  These aim to highlight treatment planning, especially current options for the patient, reasoning behind these and plans for long term dental care.  In addition to the four “mini” cases being submitted for the PG Certificate, you will be asked to present one or two cases on the final study day (or near the end of the study day programme)

A Personal Development Plan, to show not only your thoughts on your training needs and addressing these this year, but also your thoughts and plans for future development

The Portfolio.  This is the main record of your training year.  It contains a summary of clinical experience, a series of reflective entries, records of protected teaching times and assessments, both self and Educational Supervisor led, that take place throughout the year.  It is a web based portfolio and can be accessed from any computer anywhere in the world as no files are held on local machines.

We think, for these reasons, that HEKSS is a good choice for Dental Foundation Training. The year is hard work but it is also fun and worthwhile. We believe FDs will be well prepared to continue their careers in whatever area of dentistry they choose.



Huw Winstone

Associate Dean

Dental Foundation Training (Year 1)