Results of CED General Meeting in Stockholm, May 2023

Press Release of 1 June 2023


European dentists discuss solutions for workforce challenges, warn against premature implementation of the European Health Data Space (EHDS)



On 26-27 May 2023, the Council of European Dentists (CED) Member, Affiliate Member and Observer associations met in Stockholm, Sweden for their biannual General Meeting under the chairmanship of CED President Dr. Freddie Sloth-Lisbjerg. The meeting was kindly hosted by the Swedish Dental Association – Sveriges Tandläkarförbund - whose President Dr. Chaim Zlotnik welcomed the delegates.


Multi-level action and policies are needed to address dental workforce challenges:

During the General Meeting, CED adopted a Position on Dental Workforce Challenges. The position follows the CED White Paper on workforce challenges for dentistry from November 2022 and serves to outline the dental profession’s recommendations regarding this complex topic. The issue of dental workforce challenges corresponds to the overall trend that Europe has been facing when it comes to healthcare professionals, with uneven distribution of numbers across and within countries.


Through its Position, CED highlights the importance of addressing the status quo through targeted actions at all levels. Some of the dental profession’s main recommendations on facing workforce challenges include the adoption of tailored approach based on each country’s individual healthcare system and population requirements. Prevention should be prioritised and promoted within national healthcare systems, ensuring a reduction of costs, reducing the burden of disease and improving public health as a whole.


The balance in the relationship between the dentist and the dental team members should be maintained, with the dentist as the team leader. As such, task delegation and no substitution should be continuously encouraged, with the permanent supervision of the dentist. Education is also of vital importance for solving the issue: as such, the dental profession underlines that it is crucial for EU policymakers to prioritise the update of the Annex V.3/5.3.1 of the Directive 2005/36/EC  (Professional Qualifications Directive) introducing competences.


In its Position, CED also highlights the need to prioritise attracting and retaining dentists especially in relation to rural dentistry/dentistry in remote areas. Examples of such incentivisation activities include spouse career opportunities, children's education, financial initiatives that favour retention of the dental workforce in terms of geographical distribution.

Read more: CED Position on Dental Workforce 


European Health Data Space - to truly realise its potential, more time for implementation is a must:

A year into the publication of the proposal for Regulation on the European Health Data Space (EHDS), the dental profession expressed its concerns about its future implementation. In the adopted Position on the EHDS, the CED warns against the premature implementation of the EHDS, highlighting the significant pressure that dental practices would face.

The dental profession underlines that there are many discrepancies and variations in progress among Member States when it comes to use of electronic health records and dental data specifically. Furthermore, implementing and maintaining participation in the EHDS architecture brings numerous burdens to a dental practice. These include financial costs for software and hardware but also many hours dedicated to training and compliance – a time that dentists and their teams would devote to patient treatment and care. This is especially relevant for many smaller dental practices – for them, the increased financial and regulatory EHDS obligations could represent a significant challenge.


In light of the above, CED highlighted that it is essential that there are no additional costs and administrative burden associated with the introduction of the EHDS for dentists. Furthermore, considering the envisioned goal of having a functioning health data system, it is important to clarify how the costs for any additional hardware, software, cybersecurity trainings and administrative efforts for registering data and any related activities will be covered, and by which stakeholders. The dental profession recommends that, as part of the EHDS implementation, supranational (EU) financial support and supplementing actions should be provided to alleviate the abovementioned costs.


In its Position, CED highlights to policymakers that a longer and workable implementation period, extending beyond the originally envisioned year 2025, is needed. This longer implementation period should offer exclusion from the EHDS obligations for a timeframe based on individual MS needs and circumstances. This is especially relevant for dental practices that qualify as small and micro enterprises (as per the European Commission Recommendation of 6 May 2003 concerning the definition of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, section Annex, Article 2), in light of the significant burdens they may face in relation to EHDS implementation. Furthermore, in accordance with the subsidiarity principle, the individual healthcare systems of EU Member States (MS) must be respected.

Read more: CED Position on European Health Data Space (EHDS)


The Council of European Dentists (CED) is a European not-for-profit association representing over 340,000 dental practitioners across Europe through 33 national dental associations and chambers in 31 European countries. Established in 1961 to advise the European Commission on matters relating to the dental profession, the CED aims to promote high standards on oral healthcare and dentistry with effective patient-safety centred professional practice, and to contribute to safeguarding the protection of public health. The CED is registered in the Transparency Register with the ID number 4885579968-84.




For more information contact:
CED Brussels Office
Tel: + 32 2 736 34 29

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