MediEstates - Getting the balance right
Getting the balance right

Getting the balance right!


If you’re a practice owner juggling with vacancies to fill and UDA targets to be met, why not consider the help of a locum? Sam Beadle explains more

Every practice owner and dentist with an NHS contract knows the endless pressure that comes with meeting their annual UDA target. Underperformance runs the real risk of clawback, while over-fulfilment can result in dentists effectively working for free. It’s not easy to get the balance right.

Underperforming practices are not unusual, and employing new associates just to help overcome any shortfall is not always a viable option. This is when recruiting a locum can prove to be a good alternative solution to prevent any possibility of a UDA shortfall in the months to come.

Although it may seem rather soon to be considering next April’s UDA target deadline, starting the process of looking for a locum can never start soon enough. Locums can help to fill the gaps when needed either in a full-time role or on a short-term contract at any time of year.

However, finding a skilled, high-calibre locum is not always easy, with many practices finding it hard to find the time and resources to recruit directly. This is why it can make sense to use a specialist dental recruitment agency.

Having a third party in constant touch with dental professionals they can call on at short notice saves time, stress and everything that comes with trying to recruit staff, and manage a busy dental practice at the same time.

Avoiding the pitfalls
Recruiting the right candidate who fits well into the required role is often not straightforward and, ideally, as much time as possible is needed to tailor a position to both the needs of the practice and the candidate.


Between now and October is a good time to register with an agency to give ample time to find a locum


The first consideration is normally the matter of fees – agreeing what a practice is prepared to pay and what a locum wants to charge. This can depend on the location and accessibility of the practice. Negotiating fees, contracts, flexibility in terms of days and hours plus additional incentives, such as travel and accommodation, expenses can be tricky.

This is where an experienced recruitment consultant can act as a go-between in any negotiations between the two parties to prevent any potential misunderstanding further down the line.

The demand for locums is always highest in the last three months of the UDA contract, especially during February and March, and recruiting at last minute puts locums in a strong position to raise their fees accordingly.

Consequently, between now and October is a good time to register with an agency to give ample time to find a locum, and get necessary checks and paperwork in place and contracts signed before the rush begins.

Making life easier
Even if there’s no apparent need for a locum at the time, it’s always advisable for practices to register their details with a specialist recruitment agency to be prepared for any eventuality. At Medicruit, our candidate database is available for registered clients to search without obligation to find the perfect match for any position.

Locums can not only help to fulfil UDA contracts, they can provide essential back up at any time throughout the year to cover eventualities, such as staff holidays, unexpected staff illness or maternity/paternity leave.

No one knows what is around the corner, and when staffing problems occur, or targets start to slip, having an experienced recruitment consultant instructed, ready to send in candidates straightaway to cover the shortfall can help to turn any situation around.

Posted by: Sam Beadle - Recruitment Manager on

General Buyer Terms 

This agreement is in relation to MediEstates Limited whose registered office is at 1st Floor, Pacific House, Stanier Way, Wyvern Business Park, Derby, DE21 6BF acting for and on behalf of our clients ("the Vendors"); and yourself (Buyer's Name) in relation for an introduction to a prospective sale of a business as a going concern. By registering through this agreement I agree to all terms set out below:

  1. Definitions
    In this Agreement the following terms and phrases shall have the following meaning unless the context otherwise requires:

    Dental Practice business providing dental care. This business is under the MediEstates Ltd sale terms.
    Confidential Information
    Means the actual Vendors identity and all confidential information in respect of the Business, including, but not limited to, any ideas, business methods, prices, accounts, finance, marketing, research, development, manpower plans, processes, market opportunities, intentions, design rights, product information, customer lists or details, employees’ details, trade secrets, computer systems and software, and other matters connected with the products or services manufactured, marketed, provided or obtained by the Vendor, and information concerning the Vendor’s relationships with actual or potential clients or customers and the needs and requirements of such clients’ or customers’ operations.
  2. Obligation of Confidentiality
    The Prospective Purchaser agrees to treat as confidential, information supplied by or on behalf of the Vendor in connection with the sale of the Business.
  3. Exclusions
    The obligation of confidentiality set out in clause 2 does not apply to:
    1. any information received from a third party who was legally free at the time of disclosure to disclose it;
    2. any information which was already lawfully in the Prospective Purchaser’s possession prior to receiving it from MediEstates Ltd on behalf of the Vendor; and
    3. any information which is in its entirety already in the public domain.
  4. Duties of Prospective Purchaser
    1. The Prospective Purchaser shall take such a reasonable security measures to protect the Confidential Information and trade secrets.
    2. The Prospective Purchaser shall not, without the prior written consent of the Vendor, permit any of the Confidential Information:
      1. to be disclosed, other than in confidence to its legal or professional advisors;
      2. to be copied or reproduced;
      3. to be commercially exploited in any way;
      4. to be used for any purpose other than in connection with the prospective purchase of the Business;
      5. MediEstates is registered under the Data Protection Act 2018. Upon Signing this agreement you agree to follow the legal obligations of this act to protect the details of the information supplied to you, with it no to be passed outside of the control of you the prospective purchaser.
    3. The Prospective Purchaser agrees to keep a record of Confidential Information received.
    4. The Prospective Purchaser will return to MediEstates or the Vendor all documents containing Confidential Information and all copies of those documents on demand at any time which are in its possession or under its control, and for this purpose the term “documents” includes computer discs and all other materials capable of storing data and information. The Prospective Purchaser agrees that such documents remain the property of the MediEstates on behalf of the Vendor.
    5. The Prospective Purchaser must not jeopardise or re-direct the sale under any circumstances.
    6. The Prospective Purchaser must not contact the Local Area Team or CCG regarding any practice sale, by any means of media unless written permission is granted from the Vendor.
    7. To carry out own due diligence on practice purchases and accepts that any information MediEstates has supplied is information provided by the vendor and is not responsible for its accuracy or completeness.
  5. This Agreement
    The existence of this Agreement and its terms are confidential and neither MediEstates nor the Purchaser may disclose anything about this Agreement or its subject matter or implementation to any person other than in confidence to their legal or professional advisers.
  6. Duties of Prospective Purchaser
    When buying Dental practices, finance is normally needed. Our organisation operated over more than one of the MediHoldings brand, by completing this from you agree that the information can be shared to our other organisations to avoid the need to register independently and provide the best possible service.

    MediEstates will refer you to the specialist dental lending team and MediFinancial who will contact the necessary banks, whom have preferential healthcare lending rates in some cases, to ascertain which funding is available to you.
    By signing this agreement you do not have to use any of the banks MediFinancial contact, it is just another service which we provide.
  7. Deposit for Dental Practice
    If you are interested in putting forward a formal offer in for a practice, once the offer is accepted there will be a deposit required to secure the practice sale which is dependant of the practice size. This deposit is held in a client account and will be returned to the buyer on completion of the practice sale. You the buyer, will be required to sign a deposit schedule which will cover the buyer and the seller in the event that the practice sale does not proceed.
  8. Changes to this Agreement
    Any changes made to this agreement must be authorised and signed by one of MediEstates Ltd Directors.
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