We are proud to launch our brand-new, online, verifiable CPD course for Dental Care Professionals. The course duration is 45 minutes and upon completion of the post-course quiz, participants are awarded a certificate.

Interested? Read on to find out more about this course:

The aim of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 is to provide guidance to providers of health and social care, including providers of dental care and treatment, on how to ensure that the best possible decisions are made about the care or treatment of patients who do not have the capacity to make some decisions for themselves.

The Act starts from the premise that such patients will continue to make decisions about their own lives whenever possible or be included in such decisions as much as possible at all other times.

If, however, decisions have to be made on their behalf, they are always made in their best interests.

Dentists and their teams are usually well-versed in this approach but may be less familiar with the detail of the Mental Capacity Act.

The online CPD course

On completion of the Mental Capacity Act CPD course the aim is for you to understand your obligations under the legal framework for the Act and be able to apply this obligated duty into your day to day work.

The course will provide learning in the following areas:

  • Mental Capacity Act guidance for dental providers
  • CQC & GDC guidelines and expectations
  • Five key principles
  • Factors affecting capacity
  • Decision making and capacity
  • The term restraint
  • When restraint is appropriate to use
  • Practice policies and procedures.

Care Quality Commission and General Dental Council

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has no direct powers to enforce the MCA, but the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014 has very similar relevant requirements in relation to involvement, choice, decision-making and care planning.

CQC inspectors routinely ask dental practice team members about the Mental Capacity Act, and they expect all team members to have reasonably detailed knowledge of the Act and how to apply it in dental practice. These requirements are covered in the new CQC Fundamental Standards.

The below links to the CQC myth buster about consent and dental treatment. A small section is written about the Mental Capacity Act and how it should be applied in practice.


In the GDC standards publication, ‘Standards for the Dental Team’, the General Dental Council (GDC) acknowledges that decision making in patients who lack mental capacity is a complex area.

Standard 3.2.4 states: ‘You must always consider whether patients are able to make decisions about their care themselves and avoid making assumptions about a patient’s ability to give consent.’

Standard 1.4 states: ‘You must take a holistic and preventative approach to patient care which is appropriate to the individual patient.’

Subsections to 1.4 make the following statements:

‘1.4.1 A holistic approach means you must take account of patients’ overall health, their psychological and social needs, their long-term oral health needs and their desired outcomes.

1.4.2 You must provide patients with treatment that is in their best interests, providing appropriate oral health advice and following clinical guidelines relevant to their situation.