Dental practices in England have been told they can reopen from Monday 8 June, if they put in place appropriate safety measures. All routine dental care in England has been suspended since 25 March.
The British Dental Association (BDA) has welcomed the announcement but says key questions remain.
Currently, any patient with an emergency dental problem is supposed to be referred to an Urgent Dental Care (UDC) hub for treatment.
In a letter to all practices, NHS England's chief dental officer, Sara Hurley, said: "Today, we are asking that all dental practices commence opening from Monday, 8 June for all face-to-face care, where practices assess that they have the necessary IPC and PPE requirements in place."
The BDA said that while dentists would be relieved by the announcement, the ability of practices to reopen would depend on the availability of personal protective equipment (PPE).
"It is right to allow practices to decide themselves when they are ready to open. Dentists will be keen to start providing care as soon as is safely possible, but we will need everyone to be patient as practices get up and running," said BDA chairman Mick Armstrong.
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Source: BBC News, 28 May 2020