New dental practice receives hundreds of phone calls amid opening
- Credit: Sibu Daniel
A new dental surgery has had 200 people register and hundreds of phone calls since it opened, as Norfolk struggles to meet the demand for dentists.
East Harling Dental Care, on Church Road, officially opened on Monday, July 5, and its owners, Saju Varghese and Roshan John, say they have already been seeing patients back-to-back.
Mr Varghese, who has been a dentist in Norfolk for 14 years, said: “We were meant to open July 2020.
"We were going to have everything done by April/ May last year but when the coronavirus hit everything from fitting out the practice, to being inspected by the CQC got delayed.
“It was not an easy time. I didn’t even have a job during the pandemic. But we managed to hold on and stay strong.
You may also want to watch:
“The building we are in used to be a practice for quite a few years. It was an NHS practice in 2018, but they didn’t have dentists to run the place so they shut it down.
"We tried to see if we could buy it back then but it didn't happen. The next thing we know, the landlord got in touch with us, we had a few discussions and he said that wanted to lease it out to us.”
- 1 Eagle-eyed plane spotter saves pilot's life
- 2 Former hunting lodge for sale for £1.695m with huge lake
- 3 Never mind the limo - aspiring farmer rides tractor to prom night
- 4 Park issues warning over bacteria which is toxic to dogs
- 5 Queues in Norwich as hundreds flock to cider and sausage festival
- 6 Incredible aerial photos show scale of Latitude Festival
- 7 'Too close to home': Neighbours' shock as body found at Mousehold Heath
- 8 City confirm midfielder exit
- 9 Truck stopped for 'unsecure load' during road check
- 10 Town's long wait for new £37m bypass nearly over as funding agreed
Mr John, from Ely, added: “We both liked the surgery because we knew the area very well and we know Norfolk is very short of dentists.
“We are very happy we have finally opened."
The pair hope to bring more dentists into the practice to help meet demand - as Norfolk faces a serious shortage.
And although it is a private practice, Mr John said they have tried to keep the prices and fees as competitive as possible.
Since opening they have been inundated with people trying to book in.
Mr John said: “We had 99 missed calls by 9am when we got to reception on Monday.
“The first day our phone lines couldn't take it."
Mr Varghese, from Bury St Edmunds, added: “We are hoping with our combined experience and being in the industry for so long, we can focus on educating patients in prevention and help people take care of their dental health.
"We will do everything we can to help the community.”