This is not the latest approved version of this apprenticeship. View the latest version

A temporary dispensation has been applied to the assessment plan version ST0113/AP04 for this apprenticeship. The dispensation will last until the revised EPA plan is published but may be withdrawn if the assessment plan is revised sooner or the dispensation is no longer necessary.
End-point assessment organisations (EPAOs) delivering EPAs for the apprenticeship will implement the dispensation as required, supported and monitored by the relevant EQA provider.

This dispensation will allow apprentices who registered on the 5234-01 programme between 2nd December 2020 and 28th January 2021 to undertake the retired AP02 (non-integrated) apprenticeship. The dispensation will be valid for this cohort of apprentices only. Apprentices registered on 5234-01 between 2nd December 2020 and 28th January 2021 who want to undertake the new assessment plan (AP03) can transfer to 4238-12 and AP03. Starts on or after 29 January 2021 must be on 4238-12 and AP03 (integrated).

This apprenticeship has been retired

Overview of the role

Assisting other dental health professionals, providing chair side support and a high level of patient care.

Details of standard

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in healthcare under the profession of dentistry. Dental nurses work in a clinical environment that could be located in a NHS general dental practice, hospital, private dental practice, specialist dental practice, community dental service or military dental clinic. The clinical environment is called a dental surgery and consists of a dental chair, x-ray unit and various equipment and instruments required for dentistry. An apprentice will predominately work with a dentist, dental hygienist, dental therapist, clinical dental technician or orthodontic therapist within a surgery environment with patients attending throughout the day.

The broad purpose of the occupation is to provide chair side support to all dental professionals and ensure high standards of cleanliness and infection control. Dental nurses prepare instruments, materials and medicaments for dental procedures, mix materials, sterilise instruments, keep records, note dictation, carry out stock control and ensure patient comfort and safety throughout their visit.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with patients of all ages, other members of the dental team, other health professionals and representatives of organisations providing support services to the setting. Depending on the dental setting the dental nurse could also interact with schools, the prison service, community dental service, individuals in their own homes and those in care home settings.

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for providing care for people of all ages, different backgrounds, cultures and beliefs within a variety of clinical environments. Dental nurses must ensure that they only carry out a task, treatment or make decisions about a patient’s care if they are appropriately trained, competent, indemnified and have the necessary skills. Dental nurses are registered professionals and work within the standards and scope of practice as defined by the General Dental Council Scope of Practice document.

Typical job titles include:

Dental nurse

Occupation duties

Duty KSBs

Duty 1 Work to current best practice for dental nurses

K1 K2 K3 K4 K5 K6 K7 K8 K9 K10 K11

S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6

B1 B2

Duty 2 Use appropriate communication maintaining professionalism at all times and through all media to provide patient-centred care

K12 K13 K14

S7 S8 S9 S10 S11

B1 B2

Duty 3 Prepare and maintain the clinical environment

K15 K16 K17

S12 S13 S14


Duty 4 Carry out infection control procedures

K18 K19 K20 K21



Duty 5 Prepare, mix and handle materials

K22 K23 K24

S13 S16


Duty 6 Keep accurate and current patient records

K13 K25 K26

S11 S17

B1 B2

Duty 7 Prepare equipment and materials for dental radiographs

K27 K28 K29

S18 S19


Duty 8 Give appropriate oral and general health advice to patients

K5 K30


B1 B2

Duty 9 Recognise and deal with medical emergencies

K31 K32 K33 K34

S21 S22

B1 B2

Duty 10 Take responsibility for your own professional development in line with General Dental Council requirements

K1 K4 K35 K36 K37

S23 S24 S25 S26

B1 B2

Duty 11 Contribute to the quality improvement of the service

K6 K38 K39 K40

S27 S28

B1 B2



K1: Know and understand the General Dental Council Scope of Practice and Standards for the Dental Team for your role as a dental nurse and that of others in the team Back to Duty

K2: Know and understand legislation, policy and procedures related to your role as a dental nurse Back to Duty

K3: Know and understand the wider dental and healthcare system that dental nurses work in Back to Duty

K4: Know and understand the principles relating to evidence-based approaches to learning, clinical, professional practice and decision-making Back to Duty

K5: Know and understand the basic principles of a population healthcare approach including safeguarding, oral and general healthcare and your duty of care Back to Duty

K6: Know and understand how to raise concerns as described in the current General Dental Council guidance Back to Duty

K7: Know and understand dental and regional anatomy Back to Duty

K8: Know and understand the respiratory and circulatory system Back to Duty

K9: Know and understand legal and ethical responsibilities involved in protecting and promoting the health of individual patients Back to Duty

K10: Know and understand duty of candour Back to Duty

K11: Know and understand the principals of preventative dentistry Back to Duty

K12: Know and understand a range of communication methods, including verbal and non-verbal, listening skills, being aware of the barriers to communication and of how to check you have been understood Back to Duty

K13: Know and understand the importance of maintaining confidentiality and protecting all data relating to patients and their treatment Back to Duty

K14: Know and understand the importance of gaining patient consent Back to Duty

K15: Know and understand the equipment, instruments and materials used to provide chairside support to dental professionals, and operate in the clinical environment Back to Duty

K16: Know and understand how to assess, reduce and manage risks as outlined in current best practice guidelines Back to Duty

K17: Know and understand how to raise concerns that affect the running of the clinical environment in line with local policy and procedures Back to Duty

K18: Know and understand the potential routes of transmission of infectious agents in dental practice Back to Duty

K19: Know and understand the mechanisms for the prevention of infection Back to Duty

K20: Know and understand the scientific principles of decontamination and disinfection and their relevance to health & safety Back to Duty

K21: Know and understand local infection control protocols and your own responsibilities Back to Duty

K22: Know and understand the appropriate materials for different treatments Back to Duty

K23: Know and understand how to prepare materials in line with manufacturers recommendations Back to Duty

K24: Know and understand Health & Safety legislation relating to dental materials and other medication Back to Duty

K25: Know and understand the importance of maintaining accurate and current patient records in accordance with legal and regulatory requirements Back to Duty

K26: Know and understand the principles of information governance Back to Duty

K27: Know and understand the scientific principles of medical ionising radiation Back to Duty

K28: Know and understand the statutory regulations in relation to radiography Back to Duty

K29: Know and understand the different types of radiographs used in dentistry including how to process and store them Back to Duty

K30: Know and understand contributing factors that can impact on oral and general health Back to Duty

K31: Know and understand a range of conditions that could contribute to medical emergencies Back to Duty

K32: Know and understand the principles of First aid in the workplace Back to Duty

K33: Know and understand the regulatory requirements regarding documentation of medical emergencies and first aid incidents Back to Duty

K34: Know and understand your own competence and limitations in dealing with medical emergencies Back to Duty

K35: Know and understand ways to maintain your professional knowledge and competence including reflecting on your own practice Back to Duty

K36: Know and understand the importance of appraisal, training and ongoing review including ways to give and receive feedback Back to Duty

K37: Know and understand the consequences of own professional actions, attitudes and behaviours and their effect on own registration, other registrants, the dental team, the workplace and public opinion Back to Duty

K38: Know and understand audit and quality improvement processes Back to Duty

K39: Know and understand health and safety policy related to your role as a dental nurse Back to Duty

K40: Know and understand the importance of maintaining your own network of dental professionals and other stakeholders involved in the care and support of patients Back to Duty


S1: Adhere to legal and ethical responsibilities in line with General Dental Council requirements Back to Duty

S2: Take responsibility for the integrity of own actions and completed work, recognising the limits of your competence and experience Back to Duty

S3: Comply with current best practice guidelines Back to Duty

S4: Put patients’ interests first and act to protect them by working in a patient-centred way Back to Duty

S5: Effectively manage own time and resources Back to Duty

S6: Provide chair side support during dental procedures Back to Duty

S7: Monitor, support and reassure patients throughout all aspects of their treatment, ensuring patient-centred care Back to Duty

S8: Communicate appropriately, effectively and sensitively at all times and through all media Back to Duty

S9: Respect patients’ dignity and choices and act without discrimination Back to Duty

S10: Check that valid consent is obtained for all treatments and personal care delivery Back to Duty

S11: Maintain patient confidentiality at all times Back to Duty

S12: Work in the clinical environment in a safe and efficient manner Back to Duty

S13: Select and prepare the correct equipment, instruments and materials Back to Duty

S14: Carry out and record maintenance and testing of equipment in line with local policy, procedures and the scope of your own role Back to Duty

S15: Manage and perform effective decontamination and infection control procedures complying with legislative, local and current best practice guidelines Back to Duty

S16: Mix, handle, store and dispose of materials in line with manufacturers recommendations Back to Duty

S17: Create and update accurate and current patient records, including social, medical and dental history, storing and archiving them securely and in line with legislation Back to Duty

S18: Carry out processing of radiographs in line with local procedures and rules Back to Duty

S19: Make effective decisions regarding the safety of patients when taking a radiograph Back to Duty

S20: Deliver appropriate and current evidence-based oral and general health advice Back to Duty

S21: Recognise and support action to deal with medical emergencies Back to Duty

S22: Respond to medical emergencies and be competent in cardiopulmonary resuscitation Back to Duty

S23: Take part in appraisal and ongoing review processes Back to Duty

S24: Take part in continuous professional development activities Back to Duty

S25: Reflect on how your daily practice complies with the General Dental Council requirements for continual improvement Back to Duty

S26: Comply with personal development planning as specified by the General Dental Council Back to Duty

S27: Participate in quality improvement activities as required Back to Duty

S28: Be collaborative and work as part of the team Back to Duty


B1: Act in a manner consistent with the GDC standards for the dental team which include communication, professionalism, teamwork and clinical skills Back to Duty

B2: Act in a non-discriminatory manner respecting diversity and upholding the rights, dignity and autonomy of others Back to Duty


English and Maths

Apprentices without level 2 English and maths will need to achieve this level prior to taking the End-Point Assessment. For those with an education, health and care plan or a legacy statement, the apprenticeship’s English and maths minimum requirement is Entry Level 3. A British Sign Language (BSL) qualification is an alternative to the English qualification for those whose primary language is BSL.

Other mandatory qualifications

A level 3 qualification which has been approved by the General Dental Council as meeting the requirements for entry to the professional register as a dental nurse.

Level: 3

Additional details

Regulated standard

This is a regulated occupation.

Regulator body:

General Dental Council

EPAO must be approved by regulator body

Occupational Level:


Duration (months):



this apprenticeship will be reviewed in accordance with our change request policy.

Status: Retired
Level: 3
Reference: ST0113
Version: 1.2
Date updated: 30/06/2022
Route: Health and science
Typical duration to gateway: 18 months (this does not include EPA period)
Maximum funding: £6000
Regulated standard:
This is a regulated occupation
Regulator body:General Dental Council
EPAO must be approved by regulator body
LARS Code: 61
EQA Provider: Ofqual
Employers involved in creating the standard: Genix Healthcare, 211 Dental, 543 Dental Care Centre Ltd, Azam & Associates Healthcare Ltd, Bupa Dental Services, Den Dental Group Practices Ltd, Integrated Dental Holdings, Oasis Healthcare Ltd, Rodericks Dental, Smile Care Group, Acodent Dental Laboratory, Aesthetic Dental Laboratory, Bremandent Premier (Bristol) Ltd, CosTech Elite, Knight Dental Design, Optimum Dental Laboratories, PDS Dental Laboratory, A S Harrison Lab Ltd, S4S (UK) Ltd, Sparkle Dental Labs

Version log

Version Change detail Earliest start date Latest start date Latest end date
1.3 End-point assessment plan revised. 01/07/2022 Not set Not set
1.2 Standard and end-point assessment plan revised. 02/12/2020 30/06/2022 Not set
1.1 The funding band for this standard has been reviewed as part of the apprenticeship funding band review. The new funding band is £6000 03/10/2018 01/12/2020 Not set
1.0 Retired 12/11/2015 02/10/2018 Not set

Crown copyright © 2024. You may re-use this information (not including logos) free of charge in any format or medium, under the terms of the Open Government Licence. Visit

Is this webpage useful?

Thank you for your feedback

Tell us about your experience