Our dental clinic is open and you can read our COVID-safe procedures here.
We have unfortunately had to temporarily stop our beauty treatments in line with Government regulations. All existing appointments will be rescheduled.
This Vulnerable Customer Policy outlines the procedures and practices that Tg’s Dental Suite ("the Practice") will adhere to in order to identify and support vulnerable customers, in accordance with the guidance provided by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). This policy is designed to ensure that all customers, including those who are vulnerable, are treated fairly and receive appropriate assistance to access our dental services.
A vulnerable consumer is defined as someone who has personal circumstances that place them at ahigher risk of detriment, particularly if a company does not act with the appropriate level of care. Tg’s Dental Suite is committed to ensuring that all its staff are capable of identifying vulnerable consumers, and that they are able to handle a situation involving a vulnerable customer with the required levels of care, attention and respect. A consumer may find it difficult to make an informed decision about their available options for a variety of reasons. The risk factors that contribute to consumer vulnerability in financial services include:
low literacy, numeracy and financial capability skills
severe or long-term illness
mental health problems including common mental disorders (CMD)
low income and/or debt
caring responsibilities (including operating a power of attorney)
being ‘older old’ for example over 80, although this is not absolute (may be associated with cognitive or dexterity impairment, sensory impairments such as hearing or sight, onset of ill health, not being comfortable with new technology)
being young (associated with less experience)
change in circumstances (e.g. job loss, bereavement, divorce)
lack of English language skills
non-standard requirements or credit history (e.g. armed forces personnel returning from abroad, ex-offenders; care-home leavers, recent immigrants)
Living with a disability, illness or diagnosis does not in itself make someone vulnerable.
In the context of financial services, it is the person’s situation and barriers to accessing such services that may make them vulnerable. Equally a person may be vulnerable without any disability, illness or diagnosis, for example if they are recently bereaved or frail.
3. Identifying Vulnerable Customers
The Practice is committed to identifying vulnerable customers to provide them with the necessary support. Identification methods include, but are not limited to:
Observing signs of vulnerability during interactions, such as confusion, distress, or difficulty communicating.
Gathering information through patient records and history to understand specific needs.
Encouraging customers to self-identify as vulnerable when booking appointments or during interactions.
Training our staff to recognise signs of vulnerability and respond appropriately.
4. Providing Support
The Practice will take the following steps to provide appropriate support to vulnerable customers:
Communication: Staff will communicate clearly and patiently, ensuring information is understood. Communication methods will be adjusted to suit the customer's needs, such as using visual aids or providing written instructions.
Appointments: Priority booking will be offered to vulnerable customers to accommodate their specific needs and reduce potential stress.
Privacy and Dignity: We will ensure that vulnerable customers are treated with respect, dignity, and privacy. Confidentiality will be maintained in line with applicable data protection regulations.
Accessible Facilities: Our premises where possible will be designed and maintained to be accessible to customers with varying physical abilities.
Consent and Decision-making: Special care will be taken to ensure that vulnerable customers provide informed consent, and their capacity to make decisions will be assessed as needed. Where needed a Mental Capacity Assessment will be conducted by the treating dentist (Available on SOE documents section in the patients record).
5. Training and Awareness
All staff members will receive training on recognising vulnerabilities, handling interactions with vulnerable customers, and following the procedures outlined in this policy. Regular training updates will be provided to ensure a consistent and empathetic approach. As well as annual training through Agilio Ilearn specifically relating to Vulnerable patients is but not limited to.
Mental Capacity training
Learning Disabilities and Autism awareness – 3-part course
Disability Awareness in Dentistry
6. Review and Reporting
This policy will be reviewed periodically to ensure its effectiveness and compliance with current guidance. Any incidents involving vulnerable customers will be documented in our G 110A Event Record and used as opportunities for improvement.
This Vulnerable Customer Policy will be made available to all customers on our website and at our practice premises. Upon request, we can provide the policy in alternative formats to accommodate individual needs.
8. Contact Information
If you have any questions or concerns regarding our Vulnerable Customer Policy, please contact our practice manager at;