Leadership theory: implications for developing dental surgeons in primary care?
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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/sj.bdj.2011.45
The development of leadership in healthcare has been seen as important in recent years, particularly at the clinical level. There have been various specific initiatives focusing on the development of leadership for doctors, nurses and other health care professions: for example, a leadership competency framework for doctors, the LEO programme and the RCN clinical leadership programme for nurses. The NHS has set up a Leadership Council to coordinate further developments. However, there has not been the same focus in dentistry, although the recent review of NHS dental services (Steele review) has proposed a need for leadership initiatives in NHS dentistry as a medium-term action.1 Central to this will be a need to focus on the leadership role for dental surgeons. Leadership is all the more important in dentistry, given the change of government and the policy of retrenchment, major public sector reform, the emergence of new organisations such as new commissioning consortia, possible changes to the dental contract, new ways of working, and changes to the profession such as the requirements for the revalidation of dental surgeons. The question is: which leadership theory or approach is best for dental surgeons working in primary care? This paper builds on earlier work exploring this question in relation to doctors generally, and GPs, in particular, and planned work on nurses.2, 3 It will seek to address this question in relation to dental surgeons working in primary care.
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